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Microsoft Adding USB Storage To Xbox 360: Reports

Joseph F. Kovar
GB USB

The gaming site Joystiq on Thursday reported that it has reviewed documents confirmed by multiple sources to be authored by a senior software development engineer at Microsoft that indicate the company this Spring plans to update its Xbox 360 to allow game data to be saved to and read from USB devices.

That data can come from Xbox Live Arcade games, Xbox Live Indie games, Games on Demand, DLC, and Title Updates, Joystiq wrote.

However, Microsoft is limiting the amount of user data which can be stored on a USB device to 16 GB above the 512 MB required for system software.

The move seems part of a plan by Microsoft to get out of the business of selling Xbox Memory Units, which are storage devices used to store saved game data.

However, because of the 16-GB capacity limit of the USB devices, and a limit of two USB devices being accessible at any one time, Microsoft should see no cannibalization of its 120-GB Xbox 360 hard drives, Joystiq wrote.

Joystiq also wrote that the addition of USB storage connectors is consistent with rumors that Microsoft plans to offer a slimmed-down version of its Xbox 360 in the near future.

Sony's PlayStation 3 has had the ability to work with USB storage devices since the gaming console was released.

Joseph F. Kovar

Joseph F. Kovar is a senior editor and reporter for the storage and the non-tech-focused channel beats for CRN. He keeps readers abreast of the latest issues related to such areas as data life-cycle, business continuity and disaster recovery, and data centers, along with related services and software, while highlighting some of the key trends that impact the IT channel overall. He can be reached at jkovar@thechannelcompany.com.

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