Xbox Portable possibility
Having previously backed the now financially troubled Gizmondo handheld with a few of their more popular gaming series', Microsoft now appear to be reconsidering their options in this burgeoning market, despite having in the past denied any interest in launching their own DS/PSP rival. Indeed, sources now suggest that Microsoft have set-up a research group to investigate possible opportunities for handheld product, according to US magazine Business Week. There's no word on this research officially, but a movie/music/game playing portable device has been mooted, with the research group hoping to formulate the makings of a gizmo that would differ from current rivals such as the Apple iPod.
Were Microsoft to create a handheld platform, "It can't just be our version of the iPod," Peter Moore told Business Week, conceding that the company might be tempted to give the machine Xbox branding. Microsoft apparently view the reputable and established nature of their gaming brand as 'an opportunity'. Microsoft currently makes lashings of wonga from selling Windows licences on handheld platforms, and this has kept them out of the business to a certain extent, though interest appears to have been revived as the machines continue to sell by the bucketload, especially the iPod.
We'll keep you posted on this, and hope we'll be able to hear more on what Microsoft's researchers uncover. Xbox Portable, anyone?