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All That Could have Been

When Microsoft first announced their intentions to back the underdog HD DVD format as the high definition format of the future, many insiders and press alike questioned the motives of the large software company. Microsoft doesn't own any film content to distribute and the one product which could have benefited from a larger capacity disc - the Xbox 360 - had already shipped with only DVD support. Most soon realized that Microsoft never wanted HD DVD to succeed, only to stall adoption of Blu-ray long enough for digital downloads to become a reality.

This, of course, was all speculation based on analysis of the situation, but it made perfect sense and was being reinforced by Microsoft's strong push for adding content to their Xbox Live digital distribution service. Recently, the UK newspaper The Guardian sat down with the Senior Regional Director, Northern Europe, Entertainment & Devices Division for Microsoft, Neil Thompson, and briefly discussed how he felt about Microsoft's decision to support HD DVD now that the format has died.

Oddly enough, he laughs off the question. "The horse that we're fundamentally backing is the one that says the future of entertainment content is online digital distribution. I would argue that we backed the right horse." He continued, "If we're sitting here in 12 or 18 months time, we'll be saying 'why were people even thinking about a disc format when it's really about digital distribution?' Our strategy's been developed for the last six or seven years, and ever since we launched the platform it [online content] has been our big, big, big bet."

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Hatchetforce3396d ago

HD DVD was the underdog? Really?

VigorousApathy3396d ago

Yes, it had everything going against it, except perhaps pure capital backing it.

Phil Harrison Mklll3396d ago

Microsoft think there GOD! but there NOT!:D

eagle213396d ago (Edited 3396d ago )

"it is shocking to think of what could have been if Microsoft had succeeded in getting HD DVD established as a high definition format, only to pull the rug out from the format and switch to digital distribution"

SAD sh$t. :(

Obama3396d ago

Couldn't have said it better myself, eagle21. It just goes to show how much MS really "cares" for its consumers...by deluding people to buy its 360 addon.

TheEndzor3396d ago

Actually if HD-DVD were to succeed.

I bet M$ would have said "HD-DVD is the format of the future. We have been planning this all along for about 6-7 years to be exact"

on a side note. i lol'd at the following comment

"If we're sitting here in 12 or 18 months time, we'll be saying 'why were people even thinking about a disc format when it's really about digital distribution?'

heyheyhey3396d ago

haha good joke

it's as clear as day that M$ would've benefited greatly were HD-DVD to succeed

mostly because of the blow to Sony and the PS3, but also because of the royalties on their HD-DVD drive

it was a major loss to M$- no matter how much they deny it

Rick Astley3396d ago

And yet they backed the format.

- Rick rolling since 1966

PR0F3TA3396d ago

...they pulled a huge "Rick Roll" on their consumers.

seriously though, thats effed up on their part

Genesis53396d ago (Edited 3396d ago )

And in doing so now that the truth is out. They have alienated a large
corporation that also happens to make a lot of lap tops running MS software.

It cost Toshiba hundreds of million dollars to pull out of HD DVD. Unless they were aware of MS ulterior motives,they have to be less than pleased to here this.

And how about the few hundred thousand consumers they screwed over along the way. Not to mention the movie studios they left holding a dead format. This is how MS does business. Thats really dirty pool.

zapass3396d ago

anyone believes they were betting on online distribution with a console w/o standard HDD? would anyone buy a car with optional wheels?

nah, they were betting on only 1 thing:

the infinite dumbness of their fanbase.

and that's something they got spot on.

deeznuts3396d ago

Michael Bay said the exact same thing, yet everyone derided him.

Thoas3396d ago

If they didn't want HD DVD then why did they sell it and rip off the xbox 360 community with a $200 add on that they knew would be obsolete.

TheExecutive3396d ago

"anyone believes they were betting on online distribution with a console w/o standard HDD? would anyone buy a car with optional wheels?"

lol that is priceless.

NO_PUDding3396d ago

I agree with the car with no wheels thing.

If they truly were backing Downloadable content, every 360 would have a hard drive, and you wouldn't ahve to pay for the Online Service.

PSN is continually improving, and will no dobut match Live, eventually, but it's free, and even the lowliest PS3 out there is guranteed to hold 2 HD movies. Minimum.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 3396d ago
tweaker3396d ago (Edited 3396d ago )

So in essence, they wanted to lure the consumers into buying HD-DVD to stall the format war, only to abandon those supporters in 12-18 months time? Nice one MS.

Atomic3396d ago (Edited 3396d ago )

Microsoft is the troll of the gaming industry , nothing good came out of them since they entered the industry .

lamentable reliability , outdated technology , money-hats , bribes ,closed proprietary formats , overpriced accessories , over-hyped and extremely generic games , and the list goes on....

and now ,the deceptive tactics concerning their support of HD-DVD

liquidsnake3396d ago

Man I just wish I could kill that Bill Gates.

jessupj3396d ago

One of the reason why I hate ms with a passion. And one of the reasons why I can't understand why people support them and then go even further and defend them. It's crazy!!!

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 3396d ago