Another piece of the Xbox jigsaw puzzle has fallen into place today with the announcement from Microsoft that Western Digital will be providing the 8Gb hard disks that ship with Xbox games consoles. Only a couple of days ago we were quizzically investigating the Xbox brand and whether Microsoft's proposed route for it is such a sensible one. Our verdict? Developer and publisher support are key, but the name and non-solid state disk will be its downfall. In terms of specifics, the disks will be based on Western Digital's new Protégé single-platter design, which could also appear in video recorders, MP3 players and the ilk. Its 3.5" 5400RPM / ATA100 design will be available in 10Gb and 20Gb capacities for the home market. Microsoft's original Xbox spec still remains at 8Gb, but the drives are perfectly capable of 10Gb, so we may see another update to the specification before long. Perhaps the only reason we haven't yet is Microsoft's reluctance to make what will be viewed as "yet another change" to its less than ironcast original estimate.
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