Microsoft: The future is digital distribution

MCV: Mirroring remarks made by European VP of Microsoft Interactive Entertainment Chris Lewis to MCV last month, UK Xbox boss Neil Thompson has insisted that his company did not back the wrong horse when it supported Toshiba and its HD-DVD high definition disc format.

"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.

"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 online content has been our big, big, big bet."

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Horny Melon4248d ago

It's that it never placed a bet.

ukilnme4248d ago

I'm inclined to agree. They wanted both HD formats to fail in favor of digital distribution. Even if they did pick an HD format as an internal drive for the 360, they would have been delayed with the release of it and the PS3 would probably have crushed it out the gates. Blu-ray has one the HD format race but it's still a three horse console race.

sonarus4248d ago

blu ray has become a major selling point for ps3 just like dvd was a major selling point for ps2. Did anyone catch southpark last nite where they did their little "i learned something today rant?". They too say internet distribution is far from ready because internet hasn't matured enough. lol i wonder if they support the console wars

MikeMichaels4248d ago

HD-DVD players to its customers knowing they'd get screwed over down the line??

Thats much better then saying something like "hey, we took a gamble and we lost".

...and people say Sony is arrogant.

Gorgon4248d ago (Edited 4248d ago )


don't be naive. MS didn't want both formats to fail, they wanted HD-DVD to win. How does a company with such foresight to try to kill such formats so that DD can win (and they said that it was their plan for 6-7 years) launch a console with a SKU that doesn't even have an HDD? And the PRO has a 20GB HDD...

Sorry, but anyone can see that this is called damage control. Just the same when Sony said that rumble was "last gen feature" and then brought it back and when people asked why they said it was last-gen they answered "well, what did you espect us to say?".

Damage control, people. Wake up.

ukilnme4248d ago

@ Gorgon

"don't be naive." Funny.

If MS had fully backed HD-DVD they would have made the drive internal making it useful for games. Instead they took the approach to partially back it with an external drive. This was all an attempt to extend the format war while pushing their own agenda of digital distribution and it worked for a little while.

You can call it damage control if you wish but the fact remains that digital distribution was and is MS's end gaol.

deeznuts4247d ago

So was Michael Bay right the whole time when he complained about Paramount's switch to HD DVD?

Remember when fanboys across the internet ripped Bay when he made those comments, as if people sitting at their computer know more than him?

Gorgon4247d ago (Edited 4247d ago )


the reason why MS did not include a HD-DVD with the 360 was because of price. They also felt it would not be needed and that DVD9 would be more than enough. They also did not include WIFI even in Elite. They also released a SKU that doesn't even have an HDD, which is quite a weakness and conditions game development to the lowest denominator that the Arcade is, and the PRO only has a 20GB HDD. I could go on. Does this all strike you as a carefully planed strategy to prolong a format war and win on the digital downloads side???

Don't feel offended, its not that my intention at all, but I do think you are beying naive in this particular issue. MS is trying to accelerate DD now because they can't really do anything else. Even worse is the fact that the 360 is not prepared at all for it in terms of high storage (heck, not even LOW storage).

"You can call it damage control if you wish but the fact remains that digital distribution was and is MS's end gaol."

It wasn't. But it is NOW.

uie4rhig4247d ago

its just not possible to make DD the future if you are not including a hdd inside the console, how can people download anything without storage?

so i guess what MS is doing currently is damage control

MorganX4247d ago

Just one more and I'm done...

If one more MS exec issues a statement against Discs and Bluray in particular, I'm withdrawing my support. I'm going to forfeit all of the games, XBLA games, and movies I've purchased and sell my Xbox.

Microsoft is punishing the consumer to take the cheapest route to the highest profits while not delivering value to the consumer. Not supporting an HD device and advanced HD audio formats is just wrong. Their bottom line is bigger if they don't support Bluray so they're spewing this ridiculousness. Not integrating HD-DVD was their business decision to keep prices low, it worked at first, but now the tide is turning and they don't want to foot the bill. They'd rather convince the consumer getting screwed feels good and you don't really need to own your movies, and you don't need alternate endings and bonus material, etc. etc.

One more official executive statement like this and I'm done with the Xbox 360 platform Gears of War 2 or not.

They're like Hillary Clinton now, I'm just plain old tired of the lies, deceipt, and quest for money and power at the expense of the rest of us.

ravinash4247d ago

They rather say that they intended to back the losing format so that the market would be killed and they can screw over their customers in the process rather admit they back the wrong horse.
Its MS once again trying to dictate what the customer wants rather than supplying product that we really do want....same old tactics, removing the competition by any means possible.

+ Show (7) more repliesLast reply 4247d ago
Citizen Cook4248d ago

Is he suggesting that downloading will nfully take off within the next 1-2 years? How? If true, I want a 5 TB HDD M$! THEN i'll thRoW my blu-ray plaqyer in the bin!


leon764248d ago

Ahahahahahaha!! Do that you stupid noob, and then you will see the sh*t you done!!! Ahahahahahaha!!!!

Amanosenpai4248d ago (Edited 4248d ago )

Digital Distribution wont be real till good broad band providers cover every zone with a reasonable price...

I mean, DD will be great for the next gen systems ^_^, the 720, PS4, and the Nintendo (strange Japanese name here).

INehalemEXI4248d ago

Seems to me PS3 is more DD ready then any console. Allows for users to upgrade at there discretion.

If the future is DD why MS gimp the 360 by having a model with out an HDD? If all your content is DD better start putting out some HDD larger then 120 GB.

Kemicalbeliefs4248d ago

FFS can we stop with this Microsoft marketing campaign please? No matter what you try and tell me what to think, digital distribution is not high on my wanted list for the future. They may have prolonged the format war but they will not end up winners.

I want physical media that I control. I can watch, fall asleep on, wake next day, watch again, watch next week, watch in my PC, I'm not limited per machine, its not sh1tty 720p, its not filling up a hard drive that could potentially fail, its not limited to a specific source of where I have to buy it, its not price fixed, oh just its not DRM.

Just take your back pocket pay offs and talk to the mirror because we disc lovers are not interested.

Montrealien4248d ago

So you clearly think DD is not the way of the future, that is your opinion. that is all, not like what you just said is written in stone.

oh, and I really hope that tin foil hat is protecting you from the Microsoft conspiracy rays....disc lover., lol

MorganX4247d ago (Edited 4247d ago )

@ Montrealien

The issue isn't DD itself. Sure, DDs are great. But MS is saying, becasue DD is more profitable for us, we're refusing to give anyone choosing our platform Choice. We're forcing them to accept lower quality DDs today with the promise of maybe it'll get better to the exclusion of better quality alternatives that are here today (Bluray, 1080p, Dolby-TrueHD, Dolby-Master Audio).

It's almost a matter of principal. It's not in the interest of consumers to allow Microsoft to get away with this. Microsoft does not want to let the market choose, they want to dictate the market. And the only thing consumers can do to fight back, is to choose alternative platforms until MS listens and returns choice to the Xbox platform.

When I want to rent, I have downloaded many Live! movies and have bought several TV Shows and series. But when I wan to own a movie, I buy Bluray. Bluray's cost between 14.95 - 24.95. Those are good price points for the quality and will only get cheaper.

Furthermore, the Xbox fan is so loud, I don't rent anymore from Live! because the fan interrupts quiet passages. MS needs to release a silent fan upgrade or a new SKU with silent operation.

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