Next-gen Xbox rumored for 2026 could pack Zen 5 CPU with RDNA 5 GPU and be cheaper than the PS6

YouTube leaker brings us more rumors on the next-gen Xbox which is supposedly set to debut in 2026, well ahead of Sony's PS6 launch timeframe.

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Microsoft could push out its next-generation console considerably earlier than expected, with another rumor emerging with the claim that the next Xbox could be released in 2026 - something we heard at the end of last week.

That's a lot sooner than the previously rumored launch timeframe of around 2028, as you may recall, and this latest theorizing comes from RedGamingTech (RGT) on YouTube.

RGT tells us that this much sooner launch would mean that theoretically the next-gen Xbox will run with Zen 5 silicon, rather than Zen 6, which Microsoft was supposed to be considering as the engine for the console.

That would run alongside RDNA 5 graphics which has already been leaked, as VideoCardz (who spotted the YouTube clip) notes, as part of the FTC court case against Microsoft (over the Activision acquisition).

Bringing out the next-gen Xbox in 2026 would be too soon for Zen 6 to be used (Zen 5 hasn't even arrived yet, and is due to launch probably around the middle of next year).

Microsoft may be reacting to Sony's purportedly planned launch of the PlayStation 5 Pro, which is set to arrive at the end of 2024. It'd be a quick response to that, and would mean the next-gen Microsoft console would be here a long way in front of the PS6. Sony's next PlayStation may not hit the shelves until 2027 or even 2028.

RGT also informs us that some of the chatter he's picked up indicates that the PS6 will be a more expensive console than the next-gen Xbox, in all likelihood.

Ultimately, though, we'd treat all this with a considerable amount of caution until other sources on the grapevine start falling in line with these predictions.

Pro performance

As for Sony's PlayStation 5 Pro, you likely won't have failed to notice that there's been a lot of buzz around that recently.

We've heard speculation claiming that this console will be around 50% to 60% faster than the PS5 - and even quicker with ray tracing performance. It'll be twice as fast in that department, in fact.

An XDNA2-toting NPU (Neural Processing Unit) is also thought to be on hand in the PS5 Pro, meaning AI will be used to drive forward with better upscaling - and Sony is aiming to facilitate 4K gaming at over 30 FPS.

The theory is that we'll see the PlayStation 5 Pro revealed in September 2024 ahead of a launch in November, which has seemingly proved considerable food for thought for Microsoft.

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Darren has written for numerous magazines and websites in the technology world for almost 30 years, including TechRadar, PC Gamer, Eurogamer, Computeractive, and many more. He worked on his first magazine (PC Home) long before Google and most of the rest of the web existed. In his spare time, he can be found gaming, going to the gym, and writing books (his debut novel – ‘I Know What You Did Last Supper’ – was published by Hachette UK in 2013).

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