- Who's ready to start talking about the next Xbox?
Yeah, I know, it sounds idiotic -- didn't the 360 just come out? But one glance at a calendar suggests it won't be long before we start hearing all sorts of tidbits about the Xbox 720.
After all, the original Xbox came out in the fall of 2001.
The Xbox 360 was released in 2005.
Repeating that four-year lifespan, the 720 (or whatever it ends up being called) should come out, um, let's see, next year!
To be fair, Microsoft executives have said they envision a longer life for the 360 than the original Xbox enjoyed. And the 360 will easily break the sales totals of the original Xbox (at least outside Japan), so it makes sense to keep the platform alive as long as possible. After all, the second half of a console's life cycle is its most profitable, because the cost of assembling what was once cutting-edge hardware has declined dramatically.
Eating humble pie?
But I don't think Microsoft counted on the exploding popularity of the Wii. After all, what spurred Microsoft to release the 360 so early was that the original Xbox was being trounced by the PS2. Launching the 360 early did blunt the impact of the PS3, but now the Wii looks set to humble the 360 in the same way the PS2 did the Xbox.