Sponsored Links

Sponsored Links

Microsoft Next-Generation XBox to be Revealed at May 21st Event


Sponsored Links
65w ago - Today Microsoft spokesman Major Nelson has confirmed plans to officially reveal the next-generation XBox video gaming console at an event to be hosted on May 21st, 2013.

Below are the details, to quote: On Tuesday May 21st, we’ll mark the beginning of a new generation of games, TV and entertainment. On that day, we’ll be holding a special press event on the Xbox campus and we invite you to join us via the live global stream that will be available on Xbox LIVE and Xbox.com. If you are in the US or Canada, you can also watch the broadcast on Spike TV.

On that day, we’ll share our vision for Xbox, and give you a real taste of the future. Then, 19-days later at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles, we’ll continue the conversation and showcase our full lineup of blockbuster games.

We are thrilled to pull back the curtain and reveal what we’ve been working on.

A New Generation Revealed
Xbox Campus, Redmond WA
Tuesday, May 21st at 1p ET/10a PT/17:00 GMT (timeanddate.com/worldclock/fixedtime.html?msg=%23XboxReveal&iso=20130521T10&p1=234&ah=1)

Follow me on [Register or Login to view links] where I’ll share updates leading up to the event.

Update: According to [Register or Login to view links], the platform will launch in November at $500, with a $300 XBox 720 also available. However, the $300 model will require consumers commit to two years of Xbox Live gold at an expected price of $10 month.

Finally, below are further details from Here Comes the Next XBox (via windowsitpro.com/paul-thurrotts-wininfo/here-comes-next-xbox), to quote:

Microsoft on Wednesday confirmed that the next Xbox video game console, code-named Durango, will be revealed to the public during a special event at its Redmond campus on May 21. That event will kick off a multi-event unveiling that will continue through June and culminate with the release of the device, which is expected in early November.

On March 28, I exclusively revealed via Twitter that Microsoft had changed the original reveal date for the next Xbox from April 24 to May 21. So yesterday’s confirmation is interesting for two reasons, the least obvious of which is that the news came on April 24—the original date that the firm intended to reveal the next Xbox.

Here’s what I know about the next Xbox (along with some clearly identified conjecture).

  • Early announce. The initial reveal date was pushed back from April 24 to May 21 so that Microsoft could better position the device against the PlayStation 4, which Sony announced in late February.

  • Full (end user) announce. Microsoft will fully reveal details about the next Xbox, including the launch lineup of games, on the eve of the E3 tradeshow in early June 2013.

  • Developer announce? It appears that Microsoft will discuss the next Xbox developer platform at the Build conference in San Francisco in late June, based on clues on the Build website.

  • Launch. The next Xbox will launch in early November 2013.

  • Windows 8 Core. The next Xbox is based on the "Core" (base) version of Windows 8. This suggests a common apps platform or at least one that is similar to that used by Windows 8. It also suggests that Microsoft could open up this platform to enthusiast developers. (That last bit is supposition on my part.)

  • Price. Microsoft will initially offer two pricing models for the console: a standalone version for $499 and a $299 version that requires a two-year Xbox LIVE Gold commitment at an expected price of $10 per month.

  • No entertainment box. Microsoft originally planned to offer both a “full” version of the next Xbox (with video game playing capabilities) and a lower-end entertainment-oriented version, code-named “Yuma,” that didn't provide gaming capabilities. But plans for Yuma are on hold, and no pure entertainment version of the next Xbox will appear in 2013 (or possibly ever).

  • Blu-ray. The next Xbox will include a Blu-ray optical drive.

  • Internet-connected. The next Xbox must be Internet-connected to use. This is the source of the “always on”/“always online” rumors and isn’t as Draconian as many seem to believe.

  • Another Xbox 360. Microsoft will also deliver a third-generation Xbox 360 console this year that will be significantly less expensive than the current models. The new Xbox 360 is code-named “Stingray,” but it’s not clear whether this device is required because the next Xbox isn’t backward-compatible or because Microsoft simply wants a low-cost entertainment box alternative. (A third possibility- and to be clear, these possible reasons are all speculative- is that the Xbox 360 simply has life left in it and with dwindling component prices in the 8 years since the original launch, the firm can still make money selling such a device).

There’s a lot I don’t know, of course. The name is a big area of speculation, and while I’ve heard nothing official, I’d be surprised if Microsoft didn’t just called it Xbox. I’ve never seen the console, nor have any idea what it might look like.

And in addition to the aforementioned confusion over backward compatibility and the apps platform, there are questions surrounding Kinect (which I understand is integrated and non-optional) and of course the fabled (and possibly imaginary) Xbox Surface tablet. We’ll have to wait and see what Microsoft announces -or what it leaks- to find out more.

On that note, Microsoft’s May event will be broadcast live via Xbox.com, over Xbox LIVE, and on Spike TV if you're in the United States or Canada."




Stay tuned for more PS3 Hacks and PS3 CFW news, follow us on Twitter and be sure to drop by the PS3 Hacks and PS3 Custom Firmware Forums for the latest PlayStation 3 scene updates and homebrew releases!

Comments 24 Comments - Go to Forum Thread »

• Please Register at PS3News.com or Login to make comments on Site News articles. Thanks!

PS3 News's Avatar
#19 - PS3 News - 70w ago
XBox Durango XDK Confirms always-online, mandatory HDD installs, required Kinect 2 (via neowin.net/news/xbox-durango-xdk-leak-confirms-always-online-mandatory-hdd-installs-required-kinect-2 and vgleaks.com/durango-xdk/)

To quote: As we approach a potential announcement for the next Xbox console, codenamed "Durango", more info about what to expect has started to appear. VGLeaks, responsible for some next Xbox-related leaks in the past, has gained access to the Xbox Development Kit (XDK) for the next-generation console, and it may confirm a number of previously rumored features.

First up, the XDK's Hardware Overview states that the console will be "Always On, Always Connected", allowing the unit to update software and games in the background in a different power state, so that everything is always current. It's also likely that Microsoft will use this always online system to prevent game piracy, as well as provide a method for unique, bundled game codes that prevent game reselling, as we've previously heard might be the case.

The Durango console will apparently also come with a hard drive large enough to install many games (possibly 500 GB), with game installations to the HDD being mandatory. While playing the game directly from the Blu-ray discs will "not be supported", it looks like you may be able to play the game while it's installing to the hard drive, to stop a gamer's agonizing wait to play their newly purchased game.

Finally there's mention of a next-generation Kinect unit that will be required for using the next Xbox, which will come with HD video support, better depth sensing technology and better low-light vision in a smaller package with a greater field of view. All this information corresponds to what we've previously heard in relation to a new Kinect sensor.

The Verge also has heard that the information from this XDK leak is genuine, however it could be from a version of the software from last year. Considering the age of the information it may have been possible for Microsoft to make some final changes to the next-generation Xbox before it's shown off to the public, which may either happen at E3 2013, or at an event in late April.

Durango XDK

We spoke a lot about Durango hardware specs but, how about the software? In this article we will try to show you the most important parts of Durango XDK.

Durango XDK has 3 main executables amongst other things:

- Durangodocsetup: installs all the documentation in Visual Studio 2012 (VS2012 is a requirement)

s3nint3!
- DurangoRecoveryExternal: installs the “OS” in the devkit via USB stick.

- Durangosetup: installs all the tools and plugins for VS2012

s3nint3!
When you install both executables, you are able to open Durango Projects in Visual Studio in C ++ menu.

s3nint3!
You have some additional tools and documentation in the windows menu, some of them related with Kinect device.

s3nint3!
And that’s it, finally you can browse all the xdk documentation in VS2012 help.

s3nint3!
As you can see the integration with VS2012 is pretty straightforward to help developers to learn and use easily the new machine features.

Durango XDK has basically the same structure that you can see in 360 XDK.

weedge1212's Avatar
#18 - weedge1212 - 73w ago
hahaha nice (via gamingcapacity.com/xbox-720-info-revealed-by-inside-source/)

Speaking with a source who has had hands-on time with the new Xbox console prototype, we’ve learned a few new details. Under conditions of anonymity the source had this to say in regards to testing:

“Microsoft has the prototypes monitored under a microscope and an air tight confidentiality clause.”

There was some information the source was willing to provide. The full details are below:

  • While no confirmation on an announcement date, E3 will be “Party Central” in the Xbox booth
  • The new ’720′ will have 3x the processing speed of the current 360
  • No hard release date but it looks like Holiday 2013
  • 2 launch versions. 320 GB Arcade / 500 GB Pro. Exact pricing is unknown
  • 1 TB HDD available as a separate purchase
  • It will not include Blu-ray
  • No picture was available as prototype consoles are packaged in a 360 slim case to “avoid complications” about the design until announcement
  • Tech Specs; AMD eight-core x64 1.6GHz CPU, Direct3d 11.x 800MHz GPU, and 8GB of DDR3 RAM
  • Xbox Smartglass is still a feature in use
  • No word on Kinect 2.0
  • No word on “Immersive” technology being implemented

Expect new information closer to E3.

elser1's Avatar
#17 - elser1 - 75w ago
i wonder if the kinect has to be on like the new ps3 also to stop game sharing, on ps3 anyways, buy id the user to that acc. i guess me and the people i share with will all buy the same mask or balloon. lol

PS3 News's Avatar
#16 - PS3 News - 75w ago
Below are some new XBox rumors (via kotaku.com/5982986/we-know-all-about-the-next-xbox-from-someone-who-says-theyve-got-one) as follows:

The Next Xbox Has Mandatory Kinect, Game-Swapping and New Controllers, According To Leaked Info

The next-generation Xbox—the one that will follow the still-popular Xbox 360—will run multiple games at once, require game installations, and will only work when a much-improved version of the popular but divisive Kinect sensor array is plugged in, according to a source who says he has access to development hardware.

Those are a just a few details about the new console, codenamed Durango, that were shared with us by a person with access to next-gen information. Our source also claims to have a pair of Durango development kits.

We've also heard more about how the system apparently works and what it will be like to control it and play games on it, though we've not seen the unit ourselves. Our source even claims to have played some Durango games, describing the graphical leap from current-gen console gaming like going from playing Halo 2 on an original Xbox to playing Crysis on a powerful PC.

Our source for this new info goes by the name SuperDaE. He first came to the attention of lots of people last year, when he tried to sell a Durango development kit on eBay (he says the sale was blocked by Microsoft over a copyright issue; we've asked them to confirm and will let you know what they say, if anything).

He's an unusual but surprisingly well-informed source. More recently, SuperDaE contacted Kotaku with information about the next-generation PlayStation, all gleaned from more than 90 pages of Sony development kit documentation. He had a trove of new details, tied to what appears to be hundreds of pages of Microsoft documentation, to share about the next Xbox as well.

The Next Xbox Has Mandatory Kinect, Game-Swapping and New Controllers, According To Leaked Info

Like Sony, Microsoft refuses to acknowledge that their next-gen system is in the works and that people are making games for it. They're focused on selling current consoles, not giving people reasons to hold out for the future, no matter how near that future may be.

As a result, Kotaku sources who have told us about things such as the codenames of the new Wiis, Xboxes and PlayStations of the world have done so from the shadows of an industry still not able to beam brightly about the next generation of console hardware. Sources can be mistaken. They can mislead. And specs can change. Nevertheless, what SuperDaE told us synched with other reports, and some details—such as the Durango's support for Blu-Ray discs—lined up with rock-solid reports we've gotten from our own proven sources.

None of the details that follow have been confirmed by Microsoft. When contacted about some of the specifics of the story late last month, a rep cited Microsoft's policy not to comment on rumors and speculation. We've asked them again about both the Durango and about SuperDaE's claims that his eBay sale was stopped by Microsoft (though it's unclear how effective that was—he's put a "Durango PC" back on sale on eBay again). Should they comment, we'll let you know.

SuperDaE's information comes from what appears to be more than 20 white papers—overview documents—crafted to prepare game makers for the next generation. Much of what we learned from them presents the notion of the Durango as being an exceedingly capable console that merges the traits of a powerful game console with the expectations of multi-tasking users of smartphones and tablets. Peripherals such as hard drives and the Kinect sensor that were optional in the last generation are mandatory in Microsoft's next go-'round, according to SuperDaE's information.

Here's what we learned from our source, with the understanding that, while what follows is fresh info relevant up through the state of Durango development in January 2013, specs and plans can change. The likelihood of further changes does diminish as the console's expected late-2013 release gets closer. An important note: many of the specs we were made privy to were said to be set not just for development kits but for the final retail consoles as well.

Kinect

As we reported a year ago, the new version of the Kinect motion-control sensor array will be included with every Durango sold. The unit seems far superior to the one currently found for the Xbox 360 (or the PC, for that matter).

Perhaps most importantly, this isn't an optional accessory. It's mandatory. Not only does a Kinect ship with every console, but it must be plugged in and calibrated for the console to even function.

This requirement is due to the way Kinect has been integrated with the Durango; because every console can be guaranteed of having the camera, developers can now program every game with the peripheral in mind.

It's also because the Kinect will always be watching you. The new version of the camera is able to track up to six individual "skeletons" in the same room at all times. This has clear gameplay implications, such as allowing a game to instantly identify a person, but could also be related to a recently-patented Microsoft system for monitoring and maybe even charging users based on who is watching what. SuperDae's Kinect documentation also makes mention of automatic player identification becoming part of a gameplay experience.

The camera has also been improved upon the models currently available, with the Durango's version capable of independently tracking your thumbs, determining whether your hand is open or closed, and even, it's claimed, reading your facial expression and seeing whether you're angry, sad or excited. The improved viewing angle is so wide that the new Kinect doesn't even need to nod to find the best viewing angle.

For more detail on the ways in which Kinect has been improved since the device's first release in 2010, take a look at the diagrams below.

s3nint3!s3nint3!
Storage & Installs

A point of confusion during the lifetime of the Xbox 360, and one of consternation for developers, was the way in which Microsoft split the install base of the machine, selling some consoles with a hard drive and others without. This meant games could not be programmed to specifically take advantage of a hard drive installation.

That divide is gone this time around, with all Durango retail consoles shipping with an HDD. That drive is 500GB in size, which should be enough for your media storage needs, but it'll mostly be used for games, which must now be installed immediately upon first insertion of the game disc.

What's more, this installation can take place automatically, while you're playing the game. Durango titles can be designed in "sections," so that you can pop your disc in, start playing and, in the background, the rest of the game will install. Installing games should bring performance improvements, we think, but doing so in the background should also get rid of pre-game install waits, one of the more annoying hold-ups of the current generation of consoles.

Durango game installations will also be mandatory, as games can't directly access data from the disc.

Game-Juggling

The Durango will be able to run more than one game or app at once, according to the information shared with us. If you're, say, a computer or smartphone user, this is not exactly sending-a-man-to-the-moon level of innovation. But game consoles have long been stuck just running the system-level functions (cross-game voice-chat, Achievement alerts, etc) while a single game runs. On an Xbox 360, even an app as simple as Twitter could only be used if whatever game the user was playing was shut down first. Durango, thankfully, gets past that.

The Durango is said to also allow games to be put into "suspend" and "constrained" states, which seemingly allow users to pause a game, switch to a second game, then return to the first game without losing their place, provided game developers follow some Microsoft protocols. Again, this is no revolution for users of computers, phones, or even Nintendo and Sony handheld gaming machines, but it is one giant leap for consoles.

Controller

The Durango's control pad will be a "natural evolution" of the Xbox 360's pad, according to SuperDaE's info. While this suggests a near-identical layout—not necessarily a problem considering the cross-platform popularity of the layout with the PC—Xbox 360 controllers won't work with the Durango, as they use what Microsoft is calling a "new wireless technology."

Companion App

Perhaps to complement the lack of direct advances to the 360's controller itself, Microsoft is looking to bolster support for its Xbox Companion App.

Some of the possibilities we've learned of are far more dramatic than those originally intended for the current version of the app, taking advantage of both a phone/tablet's motion sensing capabilities and Kinect to execute actions more like those you'd expect from Nintendo's Wii U controller.

Microsoft says, "There is no limit on the imaginative possibilities with this input medium and its screen real estate." The only question is if developers have the manpower (or willpower) to make the most of it.

Specs

While various outlets, including Kotaku, have shared information on the technical specifications of Durango development kits, the specs you're about to see here are those for the final retail units that consumers will be getting their hands on.

The next Xbox will run on custom hardware that includes an 8-core, 64-bit CPU running at 1.6ghz, an 800mhz DirectX 11.x graphics processor units and, alongside them, various "custom hardware blocks" that are able to handle certain individual tasks, taking the strain off the main CPU.

s3nint3!
According to sketches from information shared by SuperDae, there's 8GB of DDR3 memory, along with a small amount of flash memory for system tasks. The Durango's optical disc drive is 50GB in size, while, as mentioned, there's a 500GB hard drive, with read speeds of up to 50 MB/sec.

If you've got a 3D TV set, the Durango is capable—if developers want to support it—of delivering stereo 3D content in 1080p.

Those reliant on wi-fi, and who were forced to pay for Microsoft's costly external adapter with the original Xbox 360, will be happy to know that the Durango ships with built-in wi-fi (though there's still an ethernet port for wired connections).

In terms of audio, the retail Durango will output via either HDMI or S/PDIF (optical) connections, and can support up to 7.1 channels.

There is always a high level of interest in a new generation of video game consoles, and things get particularly wild during the months before console-makers issue their official announcements. So much information flies around: some of it made up, some of it from sources we know, and some of it from sources we don't, characters who come knocking with extraordinary tales to tell.

No one seems to know everything about the new machines. SuperDaE, for example, offered nothing about the machine's name nor the look of the console or controller. He said nothing about the idea of the new Xbox requiring a constant online connection, something most recently reported by the respected Edge magazine. (One reliable Kotaku source has told us it's true, though, again, plans can change and the strictness of that online requirement—would it tolerate a spotty signal?—remains unclear.)

Soon, the leaks will be replaced by official statements and dazzling announcement events. It is nearly guaranteed that Sony will reveal its next PlayStation to the world at a major February 20 event in New York City. It's possible that Microsoft might try to spoil that event with a pre-show tease, or hold out as long as they can wait to announce—maybe until E3 in June.

For now, those who want to plan their console gaming future are left with whispers, rumors and leaks.

Our best sources continue to assume that the next Xbox will be out by the end of the year. With Xbox 360 sales remaining high, Microsoft doesn't have to put out a new machine, but with development so far underway and with hardcore gamers' apathy for circa-2005 console tech increasing, the time is increasingly right for a new gaming console.

We'll let you know as we learn more, and we'll be as clear as we can every step of the way.

VogrBurn's Avatar
#15 - VogrBurn - 75w ago
I hope that will not be called Xbox 720

Sponsored Links

Sponsored Links
Sponsored Links

Sponsored Links







Affiliates - Contact Us - PS3 Downloads - Privacy Statement - Site Rules - Top - © 2014 PlayStation 3 News