The Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S consoles are barely 6 months old, but Microsoft is already working on new Xbox console hardware, the company has confirmed.
The news arrived in a pre-E3 2021 presentation by top gaming executives at Microsoft, who were keen to point out that while Microsoft is making great strides in cloud gaming, physical hardware is integral to the future of. Xbox.
“The cloud is key to our hardware and Game Pass roadmaps, but no one should think that we are slowing down the engineering of our core console,” said Liz Hamren, CVP of Gaming Experiences & Platforms.
“In fact, we are accelerating it. We are already working hard on new hardware and platforms, some of which will not appear for years. But while we’re building for the future, we’re focused on extending the Xbox experience to more devices today so we can reach more people.
What could the new Xbox hardware be?
Now just because Microsoft is working on the new hardware for the Xbox console, it doesn’t necessarily means a new console is in the works. Hamren’s statement could relate to many things, from a new Xbox Elite Series 3 controller, to new adaptive controllers, or Xbox wireless headset form factors – in-ear, for example.
There’s also always the impending promise of Xbox Series X VR compatibility to consider – once teased, now seemingly forgotten. Microsoft has experience with Windows Mixed Reality headsets, and more broadly with HoloLens AR devices. We would love to see this idea resurrect.
And of course, there is potential for a real new Xbox console. The Xbox One has undergone a series of redesigns during its lifecycle, culminating with the refresh of the mid-generation Xbox One X. With the new consoles meeting the 4K / HDR / 60 fps standards gamers are now craving, however, it’s unclear what a new console could bring to the table, other than perhaps a smaller form factor – this Xbox Series X, for example, is a big boi.
Xbox Game Pass everywhere
Whatever form Microsoft’s new hardware takes, Hamren was keen to stress that not everything will be manufactured in-house. Specifically, Hamren discussed the potential of display technology for key Xbox platform services, including cloud gaming.
“A lot of these devices won’t be built by us. For example, we’re working with global TV manufacturers to bring the Game Pass experience directly into internet-connected TVs so that all you need to play is a controller. Beyond that, we’re also developing standalone streaming devices that you can plug into a TV or monitor, so if you have a solid internet connection, you can stream your Xbox experience.
With the promise of a new, proprietary Xbox game release each quarter, Microsoft’s gaming division now appears to be in poor health as the Xbox Series X and S approach their first anniversary. Smart studio buyouts and continued investments to attract a wider range of gamers via cloud streaming are all starting to pay off – and any new material that emerges is sure to appeal to those in orbit. the Xbox ecosystem.