XBox One – What You Need To Know

The Tuesday that many gamers had been waiting for has come and Microsoft announced the latest iteration in XBox consoles.  It isn’t much of a surprise to hear that they are planning a release ‘later this year’.  While this most likely means a retail release for the holiday season, it would be interesting to see them try to beat the Playstation 4 to the punch with a release prior to that time period.

XBox One

Some of the other details include a BluRay Disc Drive, 500GB harddrive and an 8-core CPU to go with 8GB of RAM.  The system will also have wireless-N tech for networking.  USB 3.0 ports will help for a faster connection for Kinect and other peripherals – it will be interesting to see how far they really want to take Kinect at this point.

In terms of backwards compatibility – none.  This isn’t really a surprise as the 360 and PS3 had virtually zero backwards compatibility after a couple years.

Used games?  The rumors were swirling and they will continue to swirl because Microsoft didn’t address this issue at all.  It does seem that you will have to install every game to your harddrive which would make for an interesting issue when dealing with enormous games on BluRay discs.  Will you have to uninstall old games and then start switching between them after awhile?  The move away from being ‘used game friendly’ isn’t going unnoticed, but many gamers out there won’t do much to prevent this move as they continue to buy big budget titles like Call of Duty and Madden without thinking twice.

Hopefully, the limitations of second-hand games will create a more picky audience of gamers.

(No price points have been discussed, but look for it to be similarly priced to the PS4)

XBox 720 and Playstation 4 – The Race Has Already Started

Once again, it seems that more details keep ‘leaking’ about the new XBox 720.  Most of the time these leaks are more or less just a way to get people talking and let some exciting news out for eager consumers.  This is also what we like to call ‘free marketing’.

If you consider the fact that Microsoft wants to allegedly release the new console for $300 with a Blu Ray player and cloud services for gaming it adds up to an interesting situation.

This is the first realistic ‘model’ of the XBox 720… what do you think?

The current standing of online gaming on XBox 360 has people paying $60 a year for XBox Live services.  These services include 512 MB of Cloud Game Save Space and then full access to play games like Call of Duty, Battlefield and Madden against other opponents online.  XBox Live is far and away the best online service for consoles (when compared to Wii and PS3).

The issue that Microsoft is going to run into is that people won’t be too happy to keep paying for games that are located on a cloud service rather than on disc.  Consider the risk of if the network goes down or is simply down for maintenance you won’t be able to play it at all.  This isn’t exactly a complete denial of the future of disc or hard copy gaming but the notion is starting to become more real as we get closer to the next generation of consoles.  Granted, the risks of getting rid of discs (even blu ray) are too numerous to take the idea of complete cloud gaming seriously at this point.

As of right now – everything is rumors, conjecture and absolute speculation… but one thing is certain.

The XBox 360 and PS3 have reached the end of their life cycle and at this point we should start looking for the first official announcement of a new console.