THE BUZZ: Rumor has it Microsoft has told third-party developers that the next-generation Xbox console will be available around Christmas 2013, and also shared a few specifications.
That’s according to VG247, who claims they have heard the information from multiple sources.
According to the info, the new Xbox will use the Blu-ray format and carry two GPUs that will act independent of one another. They are reported to be the equivalent to the AMD 7000 series and are described as being “like two PCs taped together,” the sources claim.
The console will run using four or six CPU cores, one will be dedicated to Kinect – which will be built in – and another will be used for the operating system. Finally the sources claim that the next Xbox will require an always-on Internet connection to run in order to prevent piracy.
EGM’s TAKE: It seems like everyday there’s a new source popping up with information on the next-generation of consoles. So much for NDAs. The majority of these claims are quite easily believable. It’s a given that Microsoft will go with Blu-ray in their next console, unless they have secretly developed something even better, which we doubt. The console is going to need a lot of power behind it to avoid becoming obselete too quickly in a constantly improving technology market, so the two GPUs and six cores sounds about right, and we’re almost certain that Microsoft will opt to build in Kinect so everyone has it regardless of SKU.
The only dodgy piece of information in this piece is that always-on Internet connection. Ubisoft came under severe criticism when they tried using this as a way of combating piracy and that was just in games, imagine the backlash if a console required it. We just don’t feel that Microsoft would run the risk of forcing something like this on players, and narrowing the market for the console in the process. The same can be said of the anti-used technology rumored to be in the next PlayStation. These technologies are just too big of a risk.