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Unauthorized Xbox pictures hit the Web

Gaming sites post what they claim are the first pictures of Microsoft's future game console, much to the annoyance of the Redmond giant.

    Gaming sites have posted what they claim are the first pictures of Microsoft's future game console, the Xbox, much to the annoyance of the Redmond giant.

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    Sneak peek at Xbox
    Billy Pidgeon, gaming analyst, Jupiter
    Microsoft refused to confirm whether the pictures are genuine. "They aren't official Microsoft pictures," a Microsoft representative said Wednesday. "Microsoft isn't commenting on it because it doesn't comment on rumors. Official stuff would go on the Xbox site."

    The console's final design is expected to be officially unveiled Saturday by Microsoft chairman Bill Gates at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

    Planetgeforce posted the pictures, stating they were taken from the gaming publication Electronic Gaming Monthly.

    Planetgeforce credited Voodoo Extreme with getting the magazine's pictures. Voodoo Extreme apparently took the photos down from its site at Microsoft's request. But Planetgeforce grabbed the images before they were removed and then posted them.

    The photos show the Xbox as a black, square device with a large x and a green light on its top. The pictures have literally been scanned from the pages of the magazine and apparently reproduced without permission from either Microsoft or the publication.

    Electronic Gaming Monthly confirmed the pictures came from its magazine, which has not yet gone to publication.

    Other game sites also posted images and information from the magazine article, including GamerWeb.com.

    News.com's David Becker contributed to this report.