Three years ago at E3 2006, Bill Gates, former CEO of Microsoft, announced a Xbox 360 HD DVD player that was capable of playing HD-DVD's. After the bloody war between HD-DVDs and Blu-ray discs was over and HD-DVD's were no more, Microsoft decided to discontinue the HD DVD drive for the Xbox 360.
Since then there have been multiple rumours regarding a possible Blu-ray drive coming to the Xbox 360. While statistics from the Digital Entertainment Group clearly show a spike in Blu-ray movie sales (91% in the first half of this year), Microsoft once again denied that a Blu-ray player for the Xbox 360 was in the making. A Microsoft spokesperson had this to say:
"As we have stated before, we have no plans to introduce a Blu-ray drive for Xbox 360. We have a long-standing high definition strategy that runs across gaming and premium content, and it's a strategy that continues to pay off for us. Today, we offer the largest library of blockbuster games and offer a growing library of nearly 20,000 movies and TV episodes on Xbox LIVE Video Marketplace (more than 5,000 in HD). In addition, people have access to 12,000 films and TV episodes on Netflix Instant watch. And coming this fall, Xbox LIVE will launch digital movies with instant on 1080p HD streaming so you can experience the best video quality with no disc, no download and no delay. "
So with that in mind, it looks like those who enjoy their Xbox 360's will not be seeing a Blu-ray drive hitting the market anytime soon. However if Blu-ray were to become the top-selling format for hard copies of movies, one would assume Microsoft would change their mind.