In the format wars, Microsoft supported HD DVD in the battle against Sony’s Blu-ray. The company even released an HD DVD player for the Xbox 360. But, HD DVD lost. Blu-ray won.
In an exclusive interview with sister site Gizmodo, Ballmer addressed the question of adding Blu-ray to the Xbox 360, saying, “Well I don’t know if we need to put Blu-ray in there-you’ll be able to get Blu-ray drives as accessories.
I think mostly the future of movies is on-demand, actually, as opposed to distribution via physical media,” Ballmer continued. “So we’re just gonna keep driving forward and try to make it the best entertainment — overall entertainment, not just gaming, but overall entertainment experience we can.”
In the post format war, Microsoft has continued to push digital distribution, which seems contradictory to the idea that Microsoft would pursue a Blu-ray add-on accessory.
When Xbox spokespeople were asked about Ballmer’s comment, they told Gizmodo, “Our solution for HD quality video on an Xbox 360 is coming this fall with Zune Video and 1080p instant-on HD streaming. As far as our future plans are concerned, we’re not ready to comment.”