The only way to watch DVDs on Microsoft’s new operating system, Windows 8, will be through purchasing Media Center or other third-party software.

The absence of any native DVD player was announced on Microsoft’s official Building Windows 8 blog, which said the bizarre decision was due to a “sharp decline” in the number of people who use their computer to watch DVDs.

Instead the focus of Windows 8 will be on H.264, VC-1, MP4, AAC, WMA, MP3, PCM and Dolby Digital Plus codecs.

If you are what Microsoft deems the minority and you do use your computer to watch DVDs, there are other options.

One is to purchase the Media Center via one of the add-on packs such as Windows 8 Media Center Pack or the Windows 8 Pro Pack.

Alternatively - and  a more attractive proposition (at least in terms of price) -  download a third-party app such as VLC.

A preview of Windows 8 will be arriving in the first week of June.

What do you think to Microsoft's decision? Let us know your thoughts.