Xbox 720 May Be Real And May Be Unveiled This Summer
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
They might not be that great at keeping a secret or playing coy, but it´s likely that Microsoft is simply bringing some relief to those eager, die-hard Xbox fans who simply can´t stand to be titillated for much longer.
With the New Year now underway, there have been some murmurings that the latest Xbox console (widely expected to be called the Xbox 720) could finally be unveiled somewhere around June 11, 2013. This date just happens to fall right in the middle of the giant gaming conference known as E3. Microsoft´s Larry Hryb (known on Xbox Live as “Major Nelson”) gets credit for whipping these fans into a frenzy after he posted a very simple and subtle countdown timer on his blog yesterday.
The blog reads, in its entirety, “And it´s on“¦” then features the timer, counting down the days, hours, minutes, seconds and milliseconds until E3 2013.
Of course, it only makes sense that Microsoft would attend such a conference. After all, the company announced their SmartGlass offerings at the 2012 E3 as well as some new titles and sales figures for their popular console. Microsoft is a key player in the gaming world and has more than enough reasons to be present at a gaming conference.
Yet, it´s their inability to keep a secret which has many anticipating the unveiling of a new console this summer. For instance, Microsoft posted a job opening online late last summer which stated that they planned to release “new versions of our most significant products including Windows, Office and Xbox” in the next 18 months.
Fast forward several months: Blog SemiAccurate announced yesterday that Microsoft has already put in an order for the silicon that they will need to power the new Xbox 720. These chips are said elsewhere to be an AMD x64 CPU and AMD Southern Islands GPU.
The Xbox 720 is also expected to ship with a 256 GB hard drive with 8 GB of memory, all for around $299 in time for Christmas 2013.
Now that many believe Xbox is moving ahead with their 720 production, all eyes have shifted towards the other large contender in this space, Sony´s Playstation. Many believe the Playstation 3 is due for a more substantial upgrade than Sony´s typical “slim” version. With the Xbox allegedly moving forward with a new model, some believe Sony will have to release their latest as well.
During last year´s E3 conference, however, Sony America´s CEO and president Jack Tretton told eager fans not to hold their breath when it comes to a Playstation 4.
“Back to the original PlayStation we always thought in 10-year product life cycles,” said Jack Tretton, speaking to the Associated Press. “I think you´re seeing those generations be longer and longer because the technology is so great, it´s difficult to surpass it.”
While the technology may indeed be difficult to surpass, it´s also true that no other electronic device market is sticking to 10-year product cycles. New cell phones, laptops and computers are released every month, and many now live in a one-year product cycle. While consoles may not perform well in such a short life cycle, it´s very possible they could thrive in a 3 to 5 year life cycle. And if one of the major consoles contenders begins to shorten the life cycle of their product, it´s difficult to imagine that the others could hold their market position without following suit.