Xbox 720 to Eliminate Disk Drive and Offer Games for Download

The Xbox 720 is rumored to be eliminating a physical disk drive and make most games and media available only through download, according to MVC.

The system is expected to debut in 2013 and MVC's source revealed that even though applications and games will be obtained mostly through download, Microsoft plans to integrate the use of removable solid-state cards for storage.

The upcoming PlayStation 4 is also rumored to be eliminating disk drives. This will completely change the landscape of the gaming industry rendering game stores such as Game Stop obsolete since any new title can be purchased in the comfort of one's home.

Gabe Newell, the billionaire head of Valve, has helped usher in this new era of downloadable gaming by introducing the company's cloud-based distribution network, Steam. Valve has all but eliminated the physical PC game retailer's business.

A rumor surfaced around two months ago that said the new Xbox would no longer play used games which would already hurt gaming retailers like Game Stop since that is where a majority of its business comes from.

An unnamed source reported to Kotaku that the next Xbox will feature a Blu-ray optical drive and will implement a new anti-used game system. The only problem with this rumor is that there was no evidence for it.

The source also admitted that it would be extremely difficult for Microsoft to add on a feature such as this one. It makes much more sense for the the company to eliminate the disk drive. This will eliminate all physical games including used ones.

This strategy will strongly affect those who depend on the low price of used games.

However, streaming could be effective for making more titles more accessible to customers. Scarcity of certain games during the Christmas season will end since everything will be available in an online store.