In a leaked 56 slide PowerPoint presentation on document hosting site Scribd (where said document was since taken offline ‘at the request of Covington & Burling LLP’, a law firm who coincidentally, or not, has Microsoft listed as one of their clients), the internet discovered that Microsoft seems to have had plans since 2010 to make 2013 a year highlighting their Xbox console platform.
The document makes a reference to an ‘Xbox 720’ which is said to feature new stuff such as Blu-ray support, native 3D output and support for 3D glasses, true 1080p output, Xbox TV apps, app multitasking, support for more sensors and gaming peripherals as well as a Metro dashboard. The latter will pretty much sync up the Xbox user interface with what we’ve seen on Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 and upcoming Windows 8 software. There’s also hints pointing to a 2013 launch with a $299 price tag with Kinect 2.
Hardware wise, the Xbox 720 is said to offer a 6X performance increase over its predecessor, 4 GB of next-gen DDR4 memory, two sets of processors (one of which will offer backward compatibility for Xbox 360 games) and a much sleeker, slimmer design, according to a rough sketch of what the Xbox 720 is supposed to look like. Still, no one should take info from a leaked 2010 to heart since these aren’t confirmed details and things may change.
Microsoft has its sights set high, predicting sales of 100 million units and a 10 year lifecycle AND they want to make it ‘the only box’ you need for living room entertainment. That brings in the Kinect 2, which will bring several improvements such as better accuracy, camera module and voice recognition, stereo imaging (two physical Kinect units placed to the left and right of your screen), tracking up to 4 players and dedicated hardware processing. All-in-all, this points to a theoretically smoother gaming experience with reduced chances of error and better game immersion.