Let the Xbox 720 Speculation Begin!

By  |  Tuesday, March 8, 2011 at 2:55 pm

Eventually, there will be new video game systems, but in the midst of an unusually long product cycle, Microsoft has avoided leaving any clues.

That changed with a few job ads, posted on LinkedIn by Microsoft. The company is seeking engineers and a graphics hardware architect for “next-generation console architectures from conception through implementation.” In other words, Microsoft is starting to work on the Xbox 720 — or whatever it may be called.

As for the other console makers, Sony has said that it’s not even thinking about next-generation game consoles. Nintendo of America President Reggie Fils-Aime said the company doesn’t necessarily have to release a Wii successor this year, despite some very old rumors to the contrary.

Microsoft, of course, isn’t commenting, and the job posting is no epic reveal. It’s not even surprising given that Microsoft is in the business of making video game consoles. But it marks the beginning of what will surely be a trail of rumors and speculation, and it should be fun to watch.

(Xbox 720 concept by DeviantArtist djeric)



6 Comments For This Post

  1. Glenn Hoeppner Says:

    Here's a thought, what if "next generation console" actually meant Microsoft Handheld? Nintendo has the 3ds and Sony has the NGP. Maybe Microsoft wants a piece of this pie too.

  2. JaredNewman Says:

    I'd be very surprised to see Microsoft build a powerful handheld to compete with the 3DS and NGP. Less surprising, I think, would be an iPod Touch-like device with the same Xbox Live integration as Windows Phone 7.

  3. Paul Says:

    Correct me if I am wrong here, but isn't the NGP supposed to be a phone? If that is the case, I don't think it should be compared to a proper portable console like the Game Boy systems.

    Of course whenever somebody mentions a cell phone gaming device I immediately think of the N97 that tried to do the same thing. At least Apple is smart enough to only casually mention Nintendo in comparison (if at all) – they always compare themselves to other phone makers.

    Remember Sony isn't the first company that tried to de-throne Nintendo in the portable console market. Others have tried even with superior products without much luck. I think that MS isn't going to try to start over from scratch. They are going to leverage their X-box success with their Windows phones somehow. Microsoft's isn't a big hardware maker – their strong point is software.

    Overall I think that MS isn't going to risk harming the X-Box cash cow by directly taking on Nintendo in what is their strongest market. If they were going to target anybody in a market it would be Apple with WP7 given that they have more experience in that market.

  4. JaredNewman Says:

    The NGP supports 3G data, but I haven't read anything about voice capabilities. Sony's definitely not positioning it as a phone. (You may be thinking of the Sony Ericsson Xperia Play, which is a phone with game controls.)

    Apple has definitely compared itself to Sony and Nintendo — but with the iPod Touch, not the iPhone.

  5. Paul Says:

    I recall Apple only talking about the iPod Touch with Nintendo only once. That's about it. Of course Apple really doesn't target the same gaming market as Nintendo does so even there it's not really a meaningful comparison.

    That being said I still don't think that MS is going to target Nintendo in the hand-held gaming Market. Sony hasn't done all that well with the PSP. Hand-held has been an established success for Nintendo for years. I just see that MS is going to focus on a proven money maker for them in gaming with the X-box and stick to letting third parties making Windows phones.

  6. tim Says:

    it is time for the xbox 720. it is time to get dx 11 and better spec on these game systems. build it and get better games at home. there is alawys something better around the coner but if we go down that road we never get to xbox 720.