Microsoft rep (inadvertently) confirms existence of 'new Xbox'

The Xbox 720, or whatever the next Xbox console will be called, has been name-dropped for the first time by Microsoft. 

Reuters
Is a new Xbox console on the way? Here, a user plays a game on the Microsoft Xbox 360.

Word of a new Xbox console have been flying around the Web for years. 

And now, for the first time, a Microsoft rep has confirmed the existence of the device, which is reportedly codenamed "Durango." Speaking to the hosts of the Vergecast, a tech podcast, Windows Live general manager Brian Hall included the "new Xbox" on a list of products that will eventually interface with the forthcoming Windows 8 operating system.

Here's the pertinent quote, courtesy of Kotaku

We did this – we've had Hotmail for – and operated Hotmail for about 16 years. We obviously have Exchange, and Outlook that people use at work. We just decided it was time to do something new and bring the best from each of those – put them together and release it right in time for the new wave of products that we have coming out with Windows 8, with the new version of Office, with the new Windows Phone and the new Xbox.

So no, there weren't any bombshells here – no details on what the device will look like, what kind of content it will run, or even what it will be called. Still, the nature of Hall's comments are telling: He mentions the new console in the same breath as the new Office and Windows Phone software, both of which are expected this year. That suggests that the Xbox 720 might launch sooner than some pundits suspected. Right now, most people expect to see it at E3, the biggest video-game conference of the year, which arrives next June. 

Horizons readers will remember that back in June, Microsoft took the wraps off SmartGlass, an Xbox add-on which will allow users to control the on-TV action via a smartphone or tablet app. SmartGlass works with TV and movie content and video games – and like the forthcoming Wii U, it makes gaming a two-screen experience.

The feature will go live this fall, Microsoft has said. 

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.