Microsoft will launch an HD-DVD drive add-on for its Xbox 360 console in November, a company executive said Wednesday.
Xbox 360 HD DVD Drive
The drive will be available in Japan on Nov. 22 and will cost 19,800 yen (US$168), Takashi Sensui, general manager of the Xbox division of Microsoft’s Japanese subsidiary, said at a Tokyo news conference.
The drive will allow Xbox 360 owners to watch HD-DVD video content on a suitable television. The system will allow viewing at up to 1080p (1080 lines and progressive scanning), which is the highest of several picture levels judged to be high-definition.
The drive is due on sale in other markets, but Microsoft did not announce pricing or availability.
Xbox 360 HD DVD
HD DVD is one of two formats competing to become the de facto replacement for today’s DVD standard. The format is backed by Toshiba and a number of other companies including Microsoft and Intel. Its rival, Blu-ray Disc, is backed by Sony, Matsushita Electric Industrial (Panasonic) and a number of other big-name electronics companies, and a drive for the system will be built into the PlayStation 3.