At their pre-E3 press conference in Los Angeles, Microsoft have confirmed that the Xbox 360 will be backwards compatible with current Xbox titles.

The machine has also had the Christmas release date confirmed for North America, Europe and Japan, however the price of both the console and games is still unknown at this point.

It's not however clear if all Xbox titles will be supported by the new machine, or just a select few, with Robbie Bach saying "Xbox 360 will be backwards compatible with the top selling Xbox games", possiblity indicating to some form of software based emulation of more popular titles from the current generation machine.

Some 160 titles are said to already be in development for the Xbox 360, with 25 to 40 games due for release by the end of 2005.

Earlier this evening Sony announced their PlayStation 3 console, which is due for release during 2006 and has a number of feature far in advance of the recently announced Xbox 360, including support for two HDTV screens.

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