CES: Interesting News from HD DVD and Xbox 360

ces.jpgAs we still wait to see if any news about the Xbox 360 will be upgraded with a HDMI port and 120gb hard drive would actually happen, there are still many items keeping us distracted as exciting bits of information have been creeping out as press release after press release is presented to the world for all to see.

The first news that has really confused everyone is that Warner has unveiled a Total HD Disk, a format that has both HD DVD and Blu-ray layers on a single disk. I can only imagine this to be much more expensive and so far no other studios are backing this new technology, but it does allow for more options within the industry. Bizarrely this may even make the HD war more stressful for the consumer rather than alleviating any as this means not only is there HD DVD, Blu-ray and HD DVD hybrids with a DVD layer, but now a fourth option.

multiplayer.jpgThe main saviour though to both HD DVD and Blu-ray formats will be the multi-disk players also announced at CES. LG have already announced their version priced around $1,199 and I am sure we are all thankful that the disks load into a single tray! Hopefully these types of players will become mainstream by the end of 2007 allowing high definition movie enthusiasts to enjoy both formats without taking a risk. I still believe HD DVD has the edge to win the war, but market trends can change dramatically over a short period of time.

Finally for HD DVD, how about a 50gb version disk? Well this will really upset the Blu-ray camp as now HD DVD will be able to store the same amount of data as their rival. It wouldn’t surprise me though if we heard that Blu-ray has a new triple layer option boasting 75gb of space in the near future, but with all the fun they had getting the dual layer (50gb) working properly, your confidence has to be pretty high to believe that will become reality anytime soon.

Now the Xbox 360 news that will actually seem like an anti-climax for some as rumours about the HDMI port and 120gb hard drives that were doing the rounds on the Internet before hand seem to have come to nothing so far, but what has been confirmed is that IPTV will be available on the Microsoft Console. So do you really want to watch television on your Xbox 360 and have the option of recording? Personally this doesn’t excite me, but it is a nice addition to the ever growing feature list. What it does suggest though is that the Xbox 360 has to, at some point very soon, make available much larger capacity hard drives. What with this and the already successful Video Marketplace, space will be running very low!

James Woodcock

Freelance Journalist, Author, Blogger & Podcaster specialising in gaming and technology.

Ever since he experienced the first controllable pixel movement on the television screen, he has been entranced by the possibilities and rewarding entertainment value generated from these metal and plastic boxes of delight. Writing hundreds of articles including commentary and reviews on various gaming platforms, while also interviewing well known industry figures for popular online publications.