In the past few weeks, the collective console consciousness has been firmly planted in the Nintendo and Sony camps. This has been thanks in large part to the release of the Wii U and the rampant rumors surrounding the PlayStation 4, or the Orbis as it’s reportedly called by Sony. Even as Microsoft made headlines with the controversial release of its Windows 8 operating system, its Xbox brand has been firmly planted in the present. The Xbox 360 received a line wide price drop in October, but talk about its successor has been scant. What’s going on with the Xbox 720, or the Durango as it’s sometimes called?
The latest issue of Xbox World magazine has a report summarizing what a number of industry sources and leaks have said about Microsoft’s next gaming machine. The magazine even went so far as to make a mock up of the machine based on the information it’s received.
Although still unconfirmed, those details fall largely in line with what we’ve heard before about the console. The next Xbox will use Blu-ray discs for optical media, 8GB of RAM (compared to the Wii U’s 2GB), and its CPU will include four cores (just as the PlayStation Orbis is rumored to have.)
It will have an “innovative” controller according to the report, but it doesn’t go so far as to say that Microsoft will mimic the Wii U with a touchscreen in its controller. It does, however, seem likely that both the next Xbox and the next PlayStation will incorporate a touchscreen, or something similar, into its controller. Nintendo isn’t the only company pursuing that strategy. Ouya, the crowd-funded Android console, will have a traditional controller with a touchscreen in it as well.
The next Xbox will be accompanied by the next generation of Kinect as well, said to be called Kinect 2.0. Microsoft will augment the new motion controller later on with a specialized headset, likely based on the company’s patents for “Project Eyewear.”
While the Durango codename is still in use, the article says that Microsoft plans to name its next console simply Xbox. A good plan actually, considering the success Apple has had by maintaining simply brands for the iPod and iPad.
Xbox World is a reliable source for information on Microsoft’s business. The magazine published stories on new versions of Kinect, Microsoft’s headset plans, and new surround sound systems that were all later detailed in the infamously leaked 10-year plan for the Xbox brand.