The next Xbox is on its way
Over the past few years, a new Xbox has been nothing but a dream. We were hoping that Microsoft was working on the next Xbox and even expected that to be the case, but only recently did we find evidence that it was.
Now we can say with certainty that not only is a new Xbox – Xbox Two – under development, but also that it is probably close to being revealed (as well as that there is more than one new console on the horizon).
1. Official Story
The official story began last year when Xbox CEO Phil Spencer told thousands of visitors to E3 2018 that the console – or, more specifically, a series of consoles, was under development: “Our hardware people are deeply buried in the evolution of the near-generation Xbox consoles, where we will again deliver on our promise to set the standard for console gaming. ”
Since then, the details of Spencer’s advertising have slowly begun to bubble around the web. First, we got a codename for the series – Xbox Scarlett – and now we hear rumors of the first games designed for the next generation of Xbox: The Elder Scrolls 6, Cyberpunk 2077 and Halo Infinite.
But the biggest reveal is a new leak that claims to have the specifications of the next-generation consoles (codenamed Anaconda and Lockhart).
Xbox Two Release Date
The report further claims that these consoles will be announced during E3 2019, and is rumored to be launched in 2020.
Meanwhile, there are also rumors of an Xbox One S without a disk drive, which is said to be launched for May 2019.
What’s the latest news about Microsoft’s next Xbox?
Thanks to a constantly rotating rumor mill, we already know that Microsoft is working on a disc-free version of the Xbox One S (codenamed Xbox Maverick). And even though we knew the console would probably come in 2019, we didn’t show when until now.
According to a report from Windows Central, the disc-free Xbox One S All-Digital will be launched globally on May 7, 2019. With the unveiling came some mockup pictures of the box, which you can see below.
Xbox Two News and Rumors
Disc-free Xbox One S
According to Windows Central, the rumored Xbox One S (codenamed Xbox Maverick) will be released this year, officially named “Xbox One S All-Digital Edition” and not part of the next-generation Scarlett family. In retrospect, pre-orders for the new console should begin in April, while the console can be purchased in May.
If you already have a large collection of physical games, don’t be afraid. According to a new report from Thurrott, Microsoft will launch a “disc-to-digital” program where you can exchange your physical discs for digital downloads. In addition, according to Windows Central, we will also see a special Fortnite Edition of the console.
Xbox Two Specs
Thanks to a report from a French gaming site, we may already have the specifications of the two consoles, Lockhart and Anaconda.
According to the report from JeuxVideo, the two next-generation consoles will be unveiled for E3 2019 – we know them so far under the names Lockhart and Anaconda.
At the same time, the website claims that the specifications leaked last year are not that far from the truth and what we can expect Microsoft to reveal later this year.
According to the report, Lockhart becomes the access model, with lower performance and therefore also a lower price. But perhaps the most interesting thing is that it gets no disk drive – and in theory acts as a streaming machine for digital games, apps and other media.
At the same time, Anaconda is becoming a far more high-end system with very high performance and a higher price – just as it was with the Xbox One X upon its launch.
Both consoles we have are equipped with SSD hard drives, which should improve overall performance and loading times.
Both consoles will, according to the report, be launched in 2020 together with Halo: Infinite (which is one of the generation launch titles).
What did the specifications leaked last year look like?
Xbox Lockhart specifications:
CPU – Custom 8 Cores
GPU – Custom NAVI 4+ Teraflops
RAM – 12GB or GDDR6 memory
Storage – SSD 1TB + GB / s
Xbox Anaconda specifications:
CPU – Custom 8 Cores
GPU – Custom NAVI 12+ Teraflops
RAM – 16GB or GDDR6 memory
Storage – SSD 1TB + GB / s
How will streaming work?
The rumors surrounding a pure-streaming Xbox started to emerge as early as July 2018. And we now know much more about how it can technically work.
According to a new report, the Xbox Scarlet Cloud will use a semi-specially developed AMD Picasso chip. Does this APU sound familiar, it’s because it’s the same Chip AMD expected to introduce with its next generation of Ryzen 3000 mobile processors, which was recently spotted in a couple of HP laptop benchmarks and even in an upcoming Surface Laptop with AMD- giblets.
However, the new Xbox for streaming will not only be powered by a laptop CPU. Microsoft will undoubtedly remove unnecessary components and create a custom-designed wrapper for their upcoming console. Interestingly, this new chip should provide even better performance compared to power consumption, which is why it will fit into an even smaller form factor than the Xbox One S and Xbox One X.
Although we would like to see the new console ready for E3 2019, the work is not so advanced that we can hardly expect to see the new console this year.
According to Jez Corden of Windows Central, it is too early to expect the new Xbox within two years, but it will probably still be backward compatible with the rest of the Xbox family.
Interestingly, 2019 to 2020 is also around the same time, analysts expect Sony to launch their PlayStation 5.
If you ask us, we will respond that we find it unlikely that Microsoft will allow Sony to launch a new console without even responding with their own within a year’s time. But we also don’t think Microsoft will try to get Sony in the lead when we consider that their true 4K gaming console hasn’t been on the streets for much longer than a year and a half.
With that said, there is nothing stopping us from thinking ahead to the next Xbox and what it will bring – linked to information found around the web.
The next Xbox consoles are called ‘Anaconda‘ and ‘Lockhart‘
According to Windows Central, two new consoles are coming at the same time as the “Scarlet Cloud Xbox console“. These are called ‘Anaconda‘ and ‘Lockhart‘.
“Anaconda” is expected to replace,
SSD drive will improve the frame rate and provide an overall boost to the graphics performance.
Will save on impressive innards
A job post suggested that Microsoft is well underway with the next Xbox. The company is looking for a senior electrical engineer who will “become part of what’s going on” in Xbox hardware.
Xbox is looking for an engineer to “lead the DRAM solutions for the Xbox console hardware development team” and adds that “DRAM solutions include DDR3, GDDR5, GDDR6, and future DRAM technologies.”
The person will work on “current and future Xbox design projects.” That was already hinted at in 2017 when Jez Corden claimed that Microsoft was already working on the next Xbox. This post backs up these rumors.
Andrew House talks about the next generation
Former PlayStation Manager Andrew House has been talking about the future of game consoles during a California GamsBeat Summit. Although House was unwilling to go into detail about the next PlayStation, he said he believes physical media will exist for some time yet, thanks to the need to reach new markets. One has to assume that this is also relevant for the upcoming Xbox consoles.
During his interview, House stated, “I have no concrete knowledge of this, but my feeling is, you will see physical media in the industry for a while yet. If you want to reach developing markets, it’s not a bad idea to bet on these traditional physical media. “
Despite this, House also believes that streaming will be big in the future of gaming – something that fits in nicely with Microsoft’s Phil Spencer, who stressed the need for a “Netflix for computer games.” This will be the natural extension for the next generation. of the download-based Xbox Game Pass.
A console for streaming only:
New reports from Thurrott suggest that we may see a console only for streaming, which will be launched with Xbox Two. This one should establish Microsoft’s concurrent streaming model as its very own full-fledged gaming experience.
It will be sold as an inexpensive alternative, thanks to the more stringent hardware requirements, as streaming of the games takes place directly from the cloud – perhaps more expensive than a regular streaming box, but cheaper than the other Xbox consoles. Accessing the Xbox games directory in the cloud is pretty likely to require a monthly subscription.
Fortunately, all games for the next generation are expected to run on both consoles (this could quickly become confusing). And if Microsoft manages to improve the delay that is currently holding back their streaming model, we can see it go a hit.
But Streaming won’t be the only way to Play
The good news is that while Microsoft is working hard to develop a streaming solution for games called Project xCloud, it will not replace traditional consoles. According to a recent post on Xbox Wire, Microsoft wants Project xCloud to give players a choice of where they want to play. If the TV is busy, you can play on your old computer. If it’s also busy, you can use your phone or even your Nintendo Switch!
But wherever you play, there will always be room for consoles, Microsoft says: “We do not develop Project xCloud as a replacement for game consoles, but as a way to give players the same level of choice and flexibility that music lovers and file nerds enjoy today. . We are adding more ways to play Xbox games. what is possible when a console is connected to a 4K TV with full HDR support and surround sound – this is still a great way to experience console gaming. We also advocate that gamers have the opportunity to choose where and how they want to play. ”
What’s the new Xbox called?
The hardest thing about looking into the future is guessing what the console will be called, thanks to its previous naming. Microsoft is not going to leave the Xbox name right away, but what it should be called more than that is hard to say. It’s pretty unlikely that the new Xbox will retain the code names Xbox Scarlett, Xbox Anaconda or Xbox Lockhart.
In the case of a brand new console generation, it would make sense to call it the Xbox Two, but the Xbox 720 once made good sense too, so let’s not get stuck on anything yet. Furthermore, we wouldn’t be completely surprised by an Xbox Zero – or wounded Infinite, which is simultaneously flush with the next Halo game.
The streaming console may also completely drop the numbered naming – what do you say to the Xbox Cloud?
What will the next Xbox be capable of?
It’s somewhat easier to guess what features we’re going to see in the next Xbox. Xbox One X was a big leap forward for Microsoft and brought true 4K gaming and PC-like performance to a console. It is currently the most powerful console on the market, so what can Microsoft do from here?
A powerful console focused on gaming
We hope Microsoft learned a lot from the troublesome launch of the Xbox One.
The Xbox One didn’t have the advantage of being the only HD console on the market that the Xbox 360 had, and its launch ended up being clouded by a Kinect package that pushed the price way too high.
As a result, the PlayStation 4 driver’s jersey took and retained market share.
Microsoft has certainly addressed many of these issues with the Xbox One X. It’s a piece of hardware that is largely focused on gaming and you don’t have to buy any hardware that you don’t need. In fact, Microsoft ended up completely dropping Kinect. We expect this new focus to continue in the future.
Xbox Two Price
With One S and One X, Microsoft embraces both an iterative and a split model. The company not only continuously launches improved hardware, but they also support earlier versions of the console and let them exist as budget packages.
As an example, the still expensive One X (much more expensive than the PS4 Pro) is mentioned, but the Xbox One S is still highlighted as a worthy and attractive priced alternative that can scale up to 4K and play all the same games from this and previous generations.
But once a console has been the budget model for a while, it also falls into oblivion. We have already seen this with the original Xbox One and it may well happen that the Xbox Two will have the same effect on the Xbox One S.
We imagine that Microsoft would like some market share for the Xbox One X (or at least 4K TV) before launching the Xbox Two, but when the console finally launches, it will still hardly feel like the same leap that it was going from Xbox 360 to Xbox One.
An additional console focusing on streaming can also be a good inexpensive alternative, as the required hardware to stream from the cloud is cheaper.
You try to move forward, instead of jumping into the unknown
In some areas, we think it’s reasonable to expect us to slowly be fed the technology that will eventually find its way to Xbox Two.
This gives Microsoft the advantage that over time they can see what works and what doesn’t, instead of taking a big leap into the unknown with a new piece of hardware.
VR and AR Support are an Option
We’ve learned that certain things are unattractive to this console generation, such as motion-sensitive gear and touch screens, but new technologies like VR and AR have proven to be an interesting area for developers. Microsoft has already confirmed that Xbox One X will support Windows 10 virtual and mixed reality headsets but has not followed this up. They were also completely absent from the console presentation during E3 2017 and we still have many unanswered questions.
If PlayStation VR continues to grow, we expect Microsoft to become more clear about where Xbox One X stands in relation to these headsets as well as more active in developing the technology for its successor. Xbox Two may well become the HoloLens console. If the technology flops, Microsoft could easily phase it out of its next-generation, as was the case with Kinect, but probably more discreetly and without affecting sales figures.
If the 4K graphics on the Xbox One X fail to give the console as wide an appeal as Microsoft hopes, we think it’s hardly going to fill as much in the promotion of Xbox Two, though it’s still part of the package.
The latest and greatest audio-visual Technology
Microsoft has recently been eager to plug the latest audio standards and technologies into their console – Dolby Atmos, 4K and HDR are all here. This is something we expect will continue in the next generation.
It’s clear that Microsoft wants gaming on the Xbox to be a full sensory experience and it’s possible that the next console will include some sort of projector system similar to Project Ariana, as Razer showed up at CES 2017, where gaming areas were expanded relative to the screen and into the player’s room. With something like this in Xbox Two, there is the potential for full empowerment and we already know that similar technology was considered in the Illumiroom project back in 2013.
A cross-platform ecosystem
Just as Nintendo is closing the gap between their handheld and home console with Switch, we can see Microsoft moving their PC and console users closer as we approach the Xbox Two. Gaming across platforms, accounts and digital purchases in Windows 10 and Xbox stores are encouraged, and this is something we expect Microsoft to continue within the new generation, especially if they continue to make consoles that have PC-like specifications. Unfortunately, Sony has already announced that they do not want to participate in cross-platform gaming with competing consoles.
Lessons from the PC world
It is quite possible that the new Xbox will have a more Steam-like user interface, which places the gamer at the center and does not confuse the customer. A system with more indie and anti-friendly content is also important (we are already looking at this (Indie @ Xbox), and if console users do not like easily upgraded consoles in the middle of the console’s lifetime, a more PC-like model with interchangeable parts may come up as well.
When will the next Xbox be launched?
We know we’re getting a new console (or two), but when will it be, and especially now that the Xbox One X has only been around for a year and a half?