The success of the hands-free motion control device known as the Kinect has successfully extended the life of the current Xbox 360 console for quite some time. Seeing as how Microsoft was the only company out of the “big three” at E3 2011 not to give us any new hardware to look forward to, does that mean they aren’t even thinking of a new “Xbox 720”?
Recent rumors point towards a new console eventually coming out, seeing as Microsoft hired a bunch of people to work on a new console back in March. In May, video games industry analysts Bill Pidgeon basically said that if sales for the current Xbox 360 drop off towards the end of this year, it would be highly likely that Microsoft unveils a new console at E3 2012. Hopefully, this will come true.
Insiders are claiming that both Sony and Microsoft won’t be giving us any new consoles until 2014, but that seems very odd seeing as the Wii U will debut in 2012. Especially for Microsoft when they didn’t initially think that their Xbox would last as long as it has so far.
It makes more sense that the “Xbox 720” will be unveiled at E3 2012 with plans to release it in 2013. The latest rumor from BGR and their “source with knowledge of Microsoft’s plans” claims that the plan is in fact, for the next console to be presented at the big expo in 2012 so we’ll be there unsurprised if it happens.
We are expecting it to be completely backwards compatible to the current Xbox 360 and to support the same controllers, Kinect, and Xbox Live accounts to keep everything as smooth as possible for the big transition. However, the big question is, will they attempt to introduce a new controller/tablet design like the Wii U, or will it focus on system power, social functions and graphics?