Friday, March 9, 2012

[RUMOR] Next Xbox has no disc drive

We've already learned that something about the Xbox 720 would undermine the used game market. It was initially speculated that there would be some sort of rights management that could detect a used disc in the machine.

Now, following information from a heavily-NDA'd source, British gaming pub MCV is reporting that Microsoft's next-gen console might shun disc media entirely.

The source reports that the new format is "some sort of interchangeable solid-state card storage" - whether it's a proprietary (PSP/Vita memory card) or standard (SD card) format remains to be seen. A launch window of 2013 has also been confirmed.

As physical media becomes increasingly irrelevant, a mainstream push in the gaming industry by Microsoft could be a death knell for retailers that have yet to establish themselves in the digital distro realm.

But how will this affect the player base?

Late last year, Digital Foundry reported that Microsoft would be releasing two models of the new Xbox: a Kinect-centric basic model for the casual and a more robust model with an optical drive, hard drive and backwards compatibility for the hardcore.

Eurogamer seems to think that this new rumor relates to the former model.

Microsoft told MCV they don't comment on rumors and speculation but later broke off a bit more for the journo types (OMNIpixel thinks that if they didn't just drop it the first time, it's almost as good as confirmed):
“Xbox 360 has found new ways to extend its lifecycle like introducing the world to controller-free experiences with Kinect and re-inventing the console with a new dashboard and new entertainment content partnerships. We are always thinking about what is next for our platform and how to continue to defy the lifecycle convention. Beyond that we do not comment on rumors or speculation.”
Sounds like a bullseye to me. As E3 2012 is just around the bend, we'd put good money on a glut of Xbox 720 details dropping this summer, if not a full unveiling with all the bells and whistles.

SOURCE: Eurogamer via MCV

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