USB Storage Confirmed for Xbox 360

Larry ‘Major Nelson’ Hryb, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 frontman, confirmed today that the Xbox 360 will soon receive a firmware update enabling the use of USB storage devices.

On April 6, gamers hooked up to Xbox Live will be prompted to update their system to enable this highly anticipated feature. Two devices, with up to 16 GB of storage each, will attach to the systems USB ports, eliminating the need to purchase Microsoft’s proprietary hard drives.

This feature is a true boon to owners of the Arcade version of the console. With a paltry 256 MB of internal storage purchasers were forced to pay $60-100 to obtain enough space to take advantage of the system’s extensive downloadable content.

Devices won’t be completely plug-and-play. Users will insert any flash device between one and 16 GB and access the memory settings from their dashboard. From there they can choose to fully format the device or manage the empty space on it. Devices such as USB hard drives with more than 16 GB of space will be useable, but only 16 GB of space will be made available for Xbox 360 storage.

To simplify the process Microsoft is partnering with SanDisc to release an Xbox 360 branded flash drive that will come pre-formated for the system.

In the announcement Hryb said, “I highly recommend using flash based instead of spinning media like a hard drive…it’s just going to give you a much better experience.”

[Major Nelson]