Spy shot of the XBOX 360 HD-DVD - Image courtesy Engadget
Microsoft's upcoming accessory gets a sneak peak

Our friends at Engadget got a sneak peak at the USB HD-DVD add-on unit at an E3 Microsoft party.  The 5.25" HD-DVD drive appears to be nothing more than an external casing for an off the shelf PC HD-DVD player with a few extra USB ports.  Ryan Block reports:

Now that you've collected yourself after that bit of hysteria, we can tell you the (non-functional) drive itself had only a power plug (which looked to be of the variety that runs to the wall, no adapter required), a mini USB host port for connecting to the 360, two full USB ports for the device to otherwise act as a USB hub, and a spot for your 360 WiFi adapter to latch on the back since it could possibly be displaced by the use of the rear USB port to get this thing running on the console.

Unfortunately, other details about the 360 HD-DVD are fairly light.  The device will not function as a stand alone unit, and almost certainly Microsoft will make sure it only functions with XBOX 360 and not any old PC.  Considering the WiFi adaptor for the 360 runs upwards of $100 when a USB WiFi dongle can be had for less than $40, don't expect the 360 HD-DVD upgrade to be much of a bargain when it is released either.

"Well, we didn't have anyone in line that got shot waiting for our system." -- Nintendo of America Vice President Perrin Kaplan

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