It’s getting to the point that Microsoft have to say something about the next Xbox. Sony announced the Playstation 4 months ago and since then news has focused on nothing but positive spin of Sony’s next console. With only stony silence from Microsoft Rumor and Speculation Commentary Division, people have only had worrying rumors to paint their pictures of Microsoft’s next gen system.
Just last week one of Microsoft’s Creative Directors Adam Orth stirred up some controversy about his comments suggesting the next Xbox will be ‘always on’ – requiring a constant internet connection to play. As has been seen from the launches of Sim City and Diablo 3, people aren’t huge fans of neccesary online invading their single player games. A strong backlash was directed at Orth’s comments but little has been heard since then.
Today, tech blogger Paul Thurgott mentioned in this video (Xbox stuff starts at 54:45) that the next Xbox would cost $500, or $300 with a subscription model. While this next Xbox launched, Microsoft would also launch ‘Codename Stingray’ – releasing a version of the Xbox 360 for $99.
Thurgott has also commented saying that whilst going back to read information about the new console, it says it “must be internet connected to use”, confirming what many fans has hoped wouldn’t come to pass. He also said that originally they were going to:
“announce this thing on April 24th. Now they’re going to announce it on May 21. We know there are events occurring this year where we’re going to learn more about Durango.”
“E3 is going to occur, Build is going to occur in San Francisco in June when they’re going to talk about the developer story – because it’s a Windows 8 device. It’s going to have the same, or basically the same, developer tools and developer APIs and all that kind of stuff.”
The date of May 21 is corroborated by a report from The Verge, similarly suggesting they have sources that “understand this date is accurate”.
However, he did mention that everything he is hearing about Xbox 720/Durango is positive, and can’t understand why people are up in arms or freaking out. He’s right from the stance that we really know nothing for certain. No-one knows the extent of this ‘always online’ malarkey so it’s futile to panic or jump ship for now.
Of course, Sony haven’t announced the price for their next console either and if the Playstation 3 is anything to judge by the PS4 could set you back a decent amount. Have people really forgotten the disaster of the $600 announcement at E3 a few years back?
Finally, Thurgott stresses that Microsoft are focusing less on the video game side, with their many concerns coming from products such as GoogleTV. This shift away from games has been evident over the life of the Xbox 360 and whether we will see this trend continue with the Durango is definitely possible. Everything is uncertain at this point so let’s just kick back and wait for May 21 before the fan boy fires start ablazing.