Microsoft reiterates that Xbox consoles aren't going anywhere, and gaming exec Liz Hamren re-confirms that new Xbox hardware is currently in development.
Today Microsoft announced a new plan that goes beyond console gaming. Xbox gaming will soon be possible in the living room without any hardware. The company plans to release special Xbox streaming sticks and include Xbox Game Pass Ultimate as a native app within smart TVs. Project xCloud servers will stream games from the Game Pass catalog directly to TV sets. So what's next for hardware? Microsoft once again says this move won't threaten dedicated consoles.
In a recent press briefing CVP of Gaming Experiences & Platforms Liz Hamren says Microsoft is already plotting on new next-gen Xbox console hardware. Just don't expect it any time soon.
"We're already hard at work on new hardware and platforms, some of which won't come to light for years. But even as we build for the future, we're focused on extending the Xbox experience to more devices today so we can reach more people," Hamren said.
"Cloud is key to our hardware and Game Pass roadmaps, but no one should think we're slowing down on our core console engineering. In fact, we're accelerating it."
"While we continue to expand in PC and mobile, console remains our flagship experience. We want to deliver the most powerful, capable consoles in the world, devices that empower our players to enjoy amazing games for years to come, including gameplay we can't even imagine yet."
Read Also: Xbox Series X Review: Dream Machine
This isn't the first time Microsoft confirmed that consoles won't go extinct.
In 2019, before the Xbox Series X shipped, Phil Spencer said the system wouldn't be the last Xbox console.
"We're not planning for Scarlett to be our last console. We're continuing to invest in our hardware team, we're going to ship Project Scarlett and we think it's an important design point in the balance between CPU and GPU that we've just never really hit on a console before, which is going to help us with feel and frame rate and refresh rate synced with game loops and stuff," Spencer told Giant Bomb in 2019.
Meanwhile, chip-makers like AMD are preparing their next-generation Zen 4 CPU and RDNA 3 GPU architectures for a late 2022 launch.
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