Hoping to discourage Xbox 360 owners from using unauthorized storage devices with their consoles, Microsoft will stop third-party memory cards from working when it unveils the next Dashboard update.
The move predictably faces opposition from Datel, which manufactures the Max Memory line of external memory cards for the console. The company tells consumer site CVG
it's "disappointed to see that Microsoft are taking these steps to prevent customers from exercising their freedom of choice."
News that the Dashboard update would create a prohibition on third-party storage cards first came from the blog
of Microsoft's Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb late last week.
"When Preview Program members start receiving the Xbox 360 system update next week, one of the changes is that unauthorized Memory Units will no longer work with the Xbox 360," he wrote, warning consumers to move profile and save files back onto the console's internal memory before the update date lest they lose access to the data.
Microsoft hasn't offered a reason for the change, but third-party hardware device compatibility openings can in certain cases offer inroads for pirates. The company is instructing consumers only to use licensed devices.
Datel indicated to CVG that it has not received much further information on the situation than consumers have, but insists its storage solutions should remain a valid option.
"Everyone is looking for ways to make their cash go further at the moment and we believe that Max Memory offers a good value, high capacity, alternative to the official Memory Unit," the company says.