Console generations could soon be a thing of the past, says Xbox's hardware chief

The future of Xbox may be less about console hardware upgrades and more about access to software.

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XiNatsuDragnel543d ago

In my opinion, there far from dead.

Eonjay543d ago

I have to agree. Eventually tech will advance and the same experience won't be capable to the older gen... hence: a new gen will be born.

JaguarEvolved543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

This would only be a thing of the past for Xbox because it seems like they've given up on consoles. They are far from the success of the ps4 and a lot of games they've released as exclusives over the last few years have been failures. Play anywhere is a strategy to get out of console hardware business and focus Xbox on just pc. Microsoft knows that they'll never be able to replicate the success of the Xbox 360 or even the ps4 so they'll try to move on to the pc .

You look at Sony PlayStation and they have a lot of games people are looking forward to with new ip's in the works people haven't seen yet but are excited to see. PlayStation will definitely have a new generation console because of the massive success of the ps4 and I don't think Microsoft will have a new Xbox one because I don't see if selling more than 20million in 4 years. Xbox one has sold about 30 million worldwide in 4 years after aggressively cutting price and giving away multiple free games

IGiveHugs2NakedWomen543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

Console cycles might be dead for Xbox, but there is no sign at all that Sony will abandon a traditional 6 to 8 year cycle.

TankCrossing542d ago

And yet PCs keep advancing, with no hard generations.

DARKKENT542d ago

It's hilarious

If they lose at something it means it's not worth it or its the end

'neglected first party studios' ...that means single player games are dying (despite the fact Sony are selling millions of first party games and Zelda single handedly sold the switch)

'xbox is getting destroyed in sales..'...means console generations are dying.(errr so why bring out the new xbx to try and garner sales?)

Microsoft are a joke..I'm glad they are not console leaders could you imagine how depressing it would be? Hearing them gloat like they did when they won four months and put out an advert claiming best selling console..or their DRM measures when they believed they would win this generation.most dishonest company out there

Nintendo and Sony for me

Death542d ago


Sony already abandoned the traditional cycle when they released the Pro. Sony is the company that spent almost half a billion to stream games which eliminates consoles and is the software only solution many of you are accusing Microsoft of wanting to shift towards. If Microsoft goes the way PC handles games, the software will last much longer and will play across multiple advances in hardware. Gamers won't upgrade hardware until software jumps ahead and hardware performance isn't up to their personal standard. It's forward and backward compatibility with software that can scale across different hardware configurations or generations.

Outside_ofthe_Box542d ago

The whole mid-gen thing is kind of pointless in my opinion and defeats a perk that consoles have, which is that developers only have to worry about one set of hardware and therefore can max it out to it's full potential.

Mid-gen consoles are tied down to the base console so developers won't be taking full advantage of it until the next console comes out, but that new console will in turn be hindered by the previous.

A true next gen console is also suppose to provided experiences that was not possible in the previous gen. How is that going to be possible if we get a new console every 3-4 years that is tied down to the console before it?

The traditional cycle is far better in my opinion.

fenome542d ago

This isn't a direct reply to you Eonjay, rather than to some of the comments that replied to you about the mid gen upgrades. This is something I wrote in a prior thread about them I'm just going to copy and paste. I'm not usually someone who copy and pastes, but I think it's appropriate in this circumstance considering the discussion:

"4k is just now finally being integrated into the mass market though. Prices were ridiculous just a few years back. I think this is just a way for early adopters to start seeing the benefits of the [4K] TV's they bought outside of traditional media.

I definitely don't want to see these mid gen upgrades as the norm down the road though. I'd prefer them just to ride it out and squeeze all the juice out of it they can for like 6-7 years and come out with a significant upgrade once tech prices drop. One good thing about what they've got under the hood right now is that everything going forward should be backwards compatible from here on out.

I still haven't gotten my 4K setup yet but I'm planning on getting one along with the Pro by the end of the year. In the meantime my OG PS4 and the TV I have right now are doing their jobs just fine. I was planning on upgrading sooner but life got in the way. It is what it is."

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AspiringProGenji543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

Sony and Nintendo will keep console generations going. Give me a console that is capable of producing quality games for years until new tech comes for the next one. This iterative thing sounds like an attempt to turn the gaming consoles into Smartphones.

fenome543d ago

Yup, right up there with "games as a service".

Eonjay543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

The term seem so made up... specially the word 'service'... then I remembered how complex Microsoft makes things sound. Looking at Microsoft office as a service... It easy to understand why they may want a game service. They already have experience with subscription based services. In his recent infamous interview decrying single player games, Phil Spencer pushed back on the idea of single player game importance and keep referring to 'games as a service' as the future. Sony is complicit as well. I hope people recognize that we as consumers need to push back against these companies.

_-EDMIX-_543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

Exactly I actually see there's a possible window from Nintendo to actually release a high-end Home console if Microsoft decides to play this type of stupid game.

I don't think Microsoft understands how easily they could be replaced in this market.

A focused competent Nintendo with a high-end Home console I can easily see dethroning and replacing Microsoft's place.

Microsoft needs to understand that it only took Sony a single generation to dethrone both Nintendo and Sega.

I think they're only feeling bold and confident because Nintendo was now making Portables and they see an option to sway the direction of the market.

I know they're hungry to try to have this whole stupid games as a service thing.

If Microsoft wants to do this games as a service thing don't be surprised if they're not even making Hardware anymore and they simply just become a third-party publisher.

Think about what we've seen from Microsoft we've seen them essentially putting all of their games on PC on the Windows store and then we start to see them putting all their games on Steam so exactly when does Dis end? So when they're seeking this games as a service what happens when they're not even making hardware and they're just putting their games on PlayStation 5 and the next Nintendo system?

How it sounding like is like Microsoft essentially does it really want to waste time with the hardware but wants to still sell the software in regards to a service but you don't need to be a hardware manufacturer to do that.

In order for them to move respectable units on their software they're going to need a big install base so I actually see them possibly going multi-platform if they want it that badly, such a void would leave Sony unopposed but it would also leave a wide opening from Nintendo to make a very triumphant return for the hardcore Home console Market.

Very interesting

fenome543d ago

When rumors first started going around about the NX I was really hoping Nintendo was going to turn it back around and come back hard with a true console. Then the Switch was announced... Don't get me wrong I'm sure it's a great little piece of kit for their fans but I'm just not interested in it. If they ever decide to come back to making regular consoles I'll buy that up day one.

Microsoft's messaging about the future and everything else has just been weird lately. I don't even know if they're sure which direction they're taking. It seems strange to be saying all this stuff right on the cusp of some new hardware release though. I'm not interested in anything they have but they need to play ball harder, Sony needs competition so they don't get complacent. I'd prefer if it was Nintendo because they just have better IPs, but they just kind of do their own thing and seem to be fine with being just another device instead of a must have.

Sounds like Atari might be stepping back into the game though, so there's always that. Lmao

I wonder what the hell they're gonna try to pop up with.

_-EDMIX-_543d ago

@fen-good read and I actually agree.

I think the void in the market is going to cause Nintendo to return back to home consoles if they see there's less competition in a clear opening to gain market share.

I believe right now there's just not enough room for someone like Nintendo but I believe if Microsoft leaves there's lots of consumers that will have no problem having a setup that is simply a PlayStation and a Nintendo.

Microsoft would have a high install base to sell games too but they would also be able to sell better software in Japan being a publisher and not a hardware manufacturer.

If this does happen this would be a very strange turn of events, but nothing that I haven't already theorized and predicted the possibility of.

This whole games as a service thing supports the concept of software more than it does Hardware.

UltraNova543d ago (Edited 543d ago )


Agreed and well said.

All Nintendo needs to do is to release a Switch dock unit with a ps4 / xb1 rivaling SoC that would enhance the portable's power making it a true console fully capable of running 3rd party IPs + show what their 1s party can really do when they have the power. The great thing about this that it changes nothing regarding the Switch's initial roadmap but it greatly improves its prospect.

I have a feeling Nintendo is just waiting for the right moment, at least I hope they do.

As for Atari I m pretty sure they are going to release a Jaguar Mini just like Nintendo did. Its a smart way of gauging people's interest in their IP, hence provide them with reliable metrics on the prospect returning to the console scene is a viable(or not) option.

fenome542d ago

Nintendo very well could make a Switch dock with extra processing power and my interest in it would rise significantly. I found it weird that it's only a cheap plastic cradle that outputs to your TV, that's it. And they have the gall to charge $80 for a replacement for it. I don't even know if Nintendo wants to go back to traditional after they found out how much money they can make milking accessories. I bet they make way more money on Amiibos (however you spell that) and accessories than they do on hardware or software at this point.

I honestly don't think Microsoft is leaving the console business anytime soon, but they do seem to be spreading themselves out pretty thin. They've also been very vocal, which isn't always a good thing, especially if your messaging isn't clear. It just seems like they've lost their focus on the present trying to gauge the future.

Atari... I still don't know about this one. At first I thought it was just another "mini" or "classic" or whatever, but then I thought "what's the point?".

They've already got discs for multiple systems that are compilations of their old games and don't get me wrong, I loved my 2600 when I was a kid, but I'm not trying to revisit Space Invaders, Pong or Pitfall anytime soon.

They could just see Nintendo and Sega doing it and it working for them so they wanna hop on the bandwagon. But if that's the case then why all the secrecy, why not just announce it?
Teaser trailer was strange, I'm just gonna have to wait and see what they're doing.

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Princess_Pilfer543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

To be frank, upgrades are the better way to go. They're all X86 machines at this point, there is no reason to waste a whole bunch of money creating a whole new architecture and OS when they could just stick more powerful hardware in a box and call it a day.

The "generation" would be how long the older machines can keep playing AAA games, which can actually be a long freaking time in terms of hardware. You can still do 1080p in modern games on the GTX 480 (though they'll definitely struggle with the more demanding titles) which released in 2010. For a somewhat more relevant comparison, the GTX 660 (or equivilant, hence the older 480 still working) is a common minimum requirement for 1080p/30 fps, and that's a mid range card from 2012.

So if MS doesn't do a new generation and just keeps releasing upgrades while cutting the price of the old hardware, you could expect the oldest version to be phased out of AAA support every 7~10 years. Maybe longer if performance improvements for hardware continue to slow down.

_-EDMIX-_543d ago

That's actually unlikely to happen because even if you're talking about them using the same architecture it's not going to stop a company like Sony from using the same architecture and just releasing the PlayStation 5 at 10 teraflops you also need to understand that not every developer is even going to waste the time supporting an older system when a new console has just released.

Are you still seeing 360 games? 360 use a very simple architecture so should they still be Downgrading all their games to support that system? I mean it's sold 80 million units...

All the games that are playing on PlayStation 4 and Xbox one must actually work on those platforms in order to have support for their upgrades they're not being made from the ground up for those upgrades.

By the time Sony releases PlayStation 5 I'm very doubtful you're going to be finding Developers looking to make something exclusive for the Xbox one x (in regards to not supporting the base Xbox One) which would have an abysmal install base.

So they're going to make a downgraded version while there's going to be a real next generational system releasing? So they're basically going to let their competitors make a PlayStation 5 exclusive that maxes out the system?

If Microsoft doesn't release their next version of the Xbox by default they would actually have to make their system near or around what PlayStation 5 would be if they actually want support.

The actual Market is not dictated by Sony or Microsoft it is actually dictated by third-party Publishers they basically make or break your system so even if Microsoft decides they want to do this they can have fun releasing a bunch of meaningless upgrades will developers move on there is no guarantee those developers will waste time making an Xbox One game when a PlayStation 5 has released.

Not everybody is going to be willing to downgrade their games to Oblivion.

Do you see developers doing that with the 360? I mean technically speaking what's even stopping them? 😂😂😂

I mean you could call a new system whatever you feel like it but the same reasons you're not seeing PS3 or 360 support is likely going to be the exact same reason you won't see PlayStation 4 or Xbox One support when PlayStation 5 comes out.

That many Publishers are not going to be as stupid as to hand over their market share and specific genres to other Publishers just so they could support an older system.

That would be like saying a company should keep releasing PlayStation 2 games and support PlayStation 3 so while your game looks like Grand Theft Auto 3 your competitors games look like Grand Theft Auto V? 😂😂😂

Are you sure any publisher is willing to seriously jeopardize their entire series over such a thing?

letsa_go542d ago (Edited 542d ago )

I agree with you and was going to post something similar. Everyone is so adamant about backward compatibility, but yet they are downvoting you for suggesting that they would do that going forward. It doesn't matter if it is called PS4Pro 2 or PS5, I bet it is going to play all PS4 games out of the box. They already have generations in iphones and android devices. Iphone 1 can't play current apps, but new iphones can play all apps. They put a gate on older hardware with the ios version. That is essentially their generation. I can see it being like that going forward.

TankCrossing542d ago

I dunno man, it's not all about technology you know. If I was Sony and I had maybe 100million users with PS4s I'd get pretty fed up of holding such a dominant position. I'd relish the chance to start again from 0.

I'm sure all the major publishers and other "stakeholders" would enjoy the financial and logistical challenge as well. Nobody is in this business to make money.

Princess_Pilfer542d ago (Edited 542d ago )

@ Edmix

Yoiu didn't actually read my post did you? It wouldn't matter if Sony released a super powerful PS5, MS could *also* release a super powerful Xbox One XL or something.

Are they still going to "waste time" supporting the Xbone when the Xbone X releases? Mid range/high end Computer parts have a lifespan where they stay powerful enough to continue playing modern AAA games .That's ~7 to 10 years. The 360 released in 2005, 12 years ago, long past even the most generous lifespan. No amount of downgrading would get most modern AAA games running on it.

So lets say Sony releases a PS5 and MS an Xbone XL in 2021. What would happen? The original Xbox One would gradually stop playing AAA games as they got too demanding (though because it uses the same XBL it could still play indie games and the like for way longer.) Meanwhile, the Xbox one X *would* still play AAA games, and it would continue to do so alongside the XL for 4 to 6 years at which point it's phased out of AAA support, MS releases a new thing, repeat.

The benefits of that over a "traditional" console generation are:
1: The newer models of Xbone would be able to play all the old Xbone games. Backwards compatability wouldn't be some feature they had to work in at significant cost, it would be there by default.
2: Some hardware (for example controllers and HDDs) could be used with newer consoles, meaning MS could sell "light" editions (or whatever) of consoles that exclude one or both of those things and save customers who already have them money.
3: New indie titles could continue to run on older versions of the Xbone for a stupidly long time (they usually aren't very demanding, meaning that MS is still making money if people can't afford or don't want to upgrade and those people still get new games.
4: If a customer has the money (and for some reason doesn't want a PC) they can upgrade ever 4 or 5 years instead of every 6-10 to get a better experience instead of having to suffer through the late 360 and late PS2 years where everything ran like garbage because the games were getting too demanding for the systems.

The downsides?
MS has to be *super* clear about which games run on which versions of the Xbone. Digitally it's not a problem as XBL could just hide or flag games that your version isn't strong enough to play so you don't waste money on them, but the physical games would need very clear labels.

That's basically it. As for as the consumer is concerned, no downsides. In every other way I can think of it's the same as a traditional console generation.

_-EDMIX-_542d ago

@prin-I actually read your entire post...

What you're actually simply asking for is backwards compatibility.

In regards to the Xbox One X supporting next-gen games I don't really think you're going to see that happen simply because you're not going to see Sony allowing it to happen with Pro so developers are not going to be downgrading their games for one specific system if they know other developers will be maxing out PlayStation 5.

Like I said that would be taking a big gamble if you're a developer in your downgrading your game to support 6 teraflops or above and your competition is starting at 10.

Sony's already made it pretty clear that there are no exclusive games being made for the pro and that the only thing that's coming to that platform are PlayStation 4 games.

I seriously don't see many developers downgrading their games to Oblivion to support the pro and Xbox One X.

They're not going to leave their competition open to max out next Generation Hardware.

I mean you're getting a bunch of downvotes because a lot of people I don't think want there PlayStation 5 or next Xbox being held back by the previous generation consoles

You might see some cross-generational games in the beginning but I actually don't think they're going to be exclusive to the Xbox One X or Pro it's actually more likely those games will be supporting all the base.

Xbox one and PlayStation 4 Pro won't even have a strong enough install base to even justify the time for such a cross-generational game it would actually make more sense to Simply make it on the base systems in just poured it to the new generation systems

I'm sorry but nobody wants to buy a PlayStation 5 or another Xbox only to have the pro and the Xbox One X essentially downgrading the entire generation it's a literally almost making it pointless to even start one if they're just using the others as base systems.

I mean why on Earth should I buy a PlayStation 5 if the pro will play all their games and I could probably purchase it at that time for $200 plus? Are you insane? A company would literally be completely stupid to destroy their entire chances of a next generational system by basically cannibalizing their own sales with a cheaper system that already exist with a massive install base

You're not going to have a significant upgrade it's going to be extremely marginal simply because of the pro and the X.

Based on what Sony stated I don't see PlayStation 5 supporting any PlayStation 4 Pro or PlayStation 4 games unless they're cross-generational or simply ports from the previous generation or BC.

Console Generations are to force the upgrade, people want to see 10 teraflops as the minimum not having all these past systems hold back the rest of Gaming.

I mean have you seen PC? Were you have all these people basically begging for games to be scaled back to Oblivion? That market is almost entirely dominated by weaker systems.

No thanks.

PlayStation 5 is for PlayStation 5 games and clearly could be backwards compatible with PlayStation 4.

But trust me I'm not going to buy a PlayStation 5 if all of their games are simply going to be supported on the pro or PS4 , it's literally almost useless to upgrade in such a respect.

I'm sorry but I don't want the Next Generation held stagnated and completely downgraded to support previous systems.

Princess_Pilfer542d ago

If you did then you're consistently misrepresenting everything I've said, which is what you usually do, so I'm done talking to you.

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badz149543d ago

MS speaking like they are the industry leader LOL

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Silly gameAr543d ago

Wonder what else he could be wrong about.

DivineAssault 543d ago (Edited 543d ago )

no thats their vision, not the industry's.. Sony & Nintendo will continue forward as they always do.. I appreciate some of the things MS has done for gaming but this generation has been their biggest screw up to me. The botched launch alone says enough.. They literally wanted DRM to be a standard practice.. They want physical games to die off (surely a financial decision).. They wanted to force kinect into the mix.. Always online BS doesnt fly with me at all nor does the inability to own/trade my games.. BTW, wheres the cloud computing? Is that still a thing or was it a marketing term to try and sell their product? Dont get me wrong, i like that you can have the games you buy on PC and xb but not enough for me to give them a dime of my money.. Releasing great software is what they need to focus on instead of features..

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