Phil Spencer says Microsoft isn’t working on a “streaming-only console”

As Microsoft is getting ready to let gamescom attendees go hands with Project xCloud next week, Phil Spencer has just confirmed that a new Xbox console dedicated to game streaming isn’t in the works. The Xbox boss doesn't think that traditional consoles are going away for a while.

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lxeasy6d ago

Glad they are making Scarlett their top priority. I'm not interested in a streaming only console at the moment. besides we're getting Xcloud soon and we should see how that does first.

ImGumbyDammit6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

That is exactly what streaming console was supposed to be, XCloud only. This was not a big device. It was rumored to be a small and cheap device like a Roku, Firestick, or Chromecast Ultra (how Stadia connects to the living room). I think it is a mistake not having something like this. It leaves a lot of customers not interested in any console but may be willing to try streaming for only Stadia to grab all at a low entry price and leaving Microsoft out of the equation. It is also a cheap way to add another console or a third in large households. Spending $129 or less for a controller and a dongle console device is a easy buy for people (portable, just plug in play and possibly with a simpler interface and all the Xbox apps - eg Netflix, Prime, etc..) or just $60 for the device itself seems like an easy sell.

Atom6666d ago

I think it's probably better to just push xcloud through mobile and the Xb1S for right now.

If it takes off, maybe do a dongle later.

rainslacker5d ago

I think the idea is to get it into an app on devices...mostly newer TV's. Sony tried something similar early on with PSNow, but there wasn't any real demand for such a thing. A smaller type device does seem prudent though, since many low-mid range TV's aren't likely to have the capability to run the app...or have the required connections to connect a controller to the device.

agnosticgamer5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

Too many issues with a streaming-only console... and I believe the Stadia release will highlight these issues. Data caps are probably the biggest block when you're talking about streaming 4K gaming and the fact internet speeds at least across the US varies from terrific to just plain terrible. I don't think the Internet infrastructure is ready right now.

VenomUK5d ago

@Obscure_Observer. It doesn't necessarily mean that the story has been 'debunked' it could simply be that Microsoft decided not to proceed with the plan. Many respected outlets were reporting the story including Windows Central (who have close links to Microsoft) and The Verge.

Also, at E3 2018 Phil Spencer talked about the next-gen he mentioned MULTIPLE new Xbox consoles, he said Microsoft is "deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles where we will once again deliver on our commitment to set the benchmark for console gaming." However when asked about it again in 2019 he said the Xbox One S AD was a new console. Although, really it was a different model of a current model that just had the blu-ray drive remove which would not have required 'deep architecting' which suggest that plans for an all streaming were scrapped.

DJStotty5d ago

I think Phil means a console solely dedicated to xcloud. They dont need to as xcloud will run on more or less any device, so why would they need to create a console just for this purpose?

ThinkThink5d ago

That's a valid point. I think they just want to keep focus at launch. Maybe they will come out with a streaming dongle the following year.

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Obscure_Observer6d ago

The myth that Xbox would turn into some streaming only platform is officially debunked; just like the one which told us that Microsoft would leave the console market and become a third party publisher.

Good work, Phil.

lxeasy6d ago

yeah that rumor was only started by fanboys who want to see Xbox fail lol so glad Phil shut that down.

rainslacker5d ago

I would think that them saying they were going to have a full console back when they first revealed scarlett would be enough to debunk the myth. Nothing new here, except that apparently they aren't going to have a cheaper, streaming only version, which I thought MS also said they were going to have, or maybe that was just a rumor.

If MS leaves the console market, it won't be until after next gen. That should be obvious with the fact they're releasing Scarlett. Again though, nothing new gleaned from this article, so I don't see why you're celebrating as if you've suddenly won some long drawn out argument.

Kingthrash3605d ago

You do realize they already are 3rd party right? I mean where have you been? Even phil himself confirmed this.

mcstorm5d ago

For me I see xcloud as more to use on pc/remote usage and as another option if people don't want the high end console/pc.

Intresting times for cloud gaming though and for me this seems to be what is now becoming the talk and VR is taking a backseat.

Obscure_Observer5d ago


"You do realize they already are 3rd party right?"

Not in the sense that you expected, that´s for sure. Microsoft are honoring previous multiplatform contracts made before those studio acquisitions by them.

Are you expecting the Scarlett´s new next games from The Initiative, Playground, Ninja Theory, RARE and Obsidian to be avaliable on Playstation?

Lol! I know you´re not! ;)

Zabatsu25d ago

So much bs comes out of Observers mouth he can actually taste it.

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AngelicIceDiamond6d ago

@Easy My bad it was the less powerful console MS was suppose to release that got quietly cancelled. As far as I'm concerned there was never a streaming only Xbox ever in the works besides Xcloud but that's different.

"That's why I'm glad that Phil came out and flat out stopped that rumor because of people like you." Ok chill like I said I got it mixed up didn't mean to spread misinformation. As I said there were rumors of slightly less stronger Xbox that was suppose to be cost efficient. But that got silently cancelled. Here's a link of that.

Christopher6d ago

Was pretty clear that Scarlett was the streaming console and the info was about turning it into its own cloud streaming tool without having to sub to a service.

Obscure_Observer6d ago

Scarlett was never supposed to be *THE* streaming console. Scarlett is supposed to be a powerful console to run games locally with max performance and image quality.

A streaming only console would never require such beefy specs and would probably cost less than half.

Christopher6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

***Scarlett was never supposed to be *THE* streaming console. ***

Based on rumors from people who got it all wrong? Stop listening to people online for rumors.

I didn't say Scarlett was going to be it, I said Scarlett put those rumors to rest by being even more.

***A streaming only console would never require such beefy specs***

Yeah, but the fact is that anyone thought they were working on hardware just for streaming, knowing what it would require versus what already existed. With phones, tablets, and the current Xbox being more than enough to do that, what company in their right mind would make one with limited features when they don't need to? Just sell the model that can do that plus more and requires no additional work.

That's why all those rumors got it 100% wrong and when they announced Scarlett would be it's own cloud provider, it became very easy to see where all of those people got it wrong.

Obscure_Observer6d ago


"Based on rumors from people who got it all wrong? Stop listening to people online for rumors."

"Based on rumors from people who got it all wrong? Stop listening to people online for rumors."

"People who got it all wrong"? Maybe the idea of a streaming only Xbox console is not interesting to you (or me), but i can see why it would work for Microsoft from a business standpoint and, for casual gamers who only desires the console experience but don´t want to spend a lot of money on a powerful console, since they don´t care about maximum performance or visual fidelity.

Christopher6d ago

@Observer: people got it wrong, though. I get you would want it, and it would exist with just the regular Xbox Slim that you can get sub-$200 easily since it doesn't require much to do that and is primarily on the Cloud side, but that has nothing to do with the rumors being completely wrong on what Microsoft was doing.

AngelicIceDiamond6d ago

The problem is this ins't news he stated that in that one lnterview a few weeks backs. Plus Scarlet was never the streaming only console, the streaming only console got quietly cancelled by MS.

lxeasy6d ago

I wasn't so where you worked at Microsoft. Please can you source your claim that Microsoft "quietly canceled" their streaming only Xbox? Send us a link. That's why I'm glad that Phil came out and flat out stopped that rumor because of people like you.

Christopher6d ago (Edited 6d ago )

Scarlett wasn't the console but was a sign that they are focusing on better and not cloud-tailored hardware.

A streaming console would be pointless with hardware already out there that could stream games and the prices continuing to go down every year.

rainslacker5d ago (Edited 5d ago )

I'm kind of fuzzy on the original reveal about all this. Was the streaming only version actually announced? I can't remember if they were rumors, or they said they had a couple in the works.

I think some sort of streaming only device may be applicable to the market. Nothing as fancy as a console, but just something like a Chromecast or Roku. Not every device is going to support whatever they're doing to stream content, and there are millions of TV's out there already. On top of that, it's questionable if newer TV's will bother including all the necessary hardware to run a service of this nature....namely a way to have a controller input with low lag, and a good network card as most TV's use horrible network adapters since lag isn't typically an issue for TV content.


I don't think it would be pointless. It'd be a lot cheaper to have a device dedicated to streaming than require the customer to buy a full console. Even if they only require an X1, the X1 is going to feel like old tech next gen, so it would have the wrong stigma attached to something new they're doing. I wouldn't think a streaming device would require much in terms of hardware.

Christopher5d ago

***I don't think it would be pointless. It'd be a lot cheaper to have a device dedicated to streaming than require the customer to buy a full console. Even if they only require an X1, the X1 is going to feel like old tech next gen***

Eh, gotta disagree 100%.

1. People already have things for streaming, just enable controller support on PC, Android, iOS.
2. It's cheap hardware, but people will find XBO 'old' so they should buy something lesser than that just to feel better?
3. Going with #1 and #2, then they should just use whatever new device they buy rather than having to pigeon-hole themselves into a console?

rainslacker4d ago

I'm speaking of old hardware from a psychological viewpoint. However, thinking on it, the discless x1s makes more sense in that scenario. Rebrand it as a streaming device that can also run local x1 games and their back catalog of xbox games locally, and one can use it to also remote play their purchased games. Itll likely be pretty cheap when things really get rolling with streaming.

In any case, some sort if stand alone seems like it would make sense. Even if because it would be more easily portable for those that travel.

I still think that TV makers or other device makers arent going to jump on this bandwagon on the hardware side. There's more to what's required than just having the app on the tv. Google may be an exception since they make some of their own hardware, and they already will have a stand alone box

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Profchaos5d ago

Yeah I remember those very early rumours also typically they were bs

5d ago
BlackIceJoe6d ago

I personally hope Microsoft will start up several new game studios and then bring out their own vr headset.

I can't tell you enough how I've enjoyed my time with Oculus and if Microsoft would get fully onboard with vr, l can see it being a boon for not just Xbox, but Microsoft as a whole. Because this is where I see the industry going.

There is so many potential things with vr, that have nothing to do with video games. For example hospitals could use it to help with surgery, you could use it as a virtual shopping center, there even is military benefits and I'm just surprised Microsoft isn't investing more into that field of business.

DaDrunkenJester6d ago

Even if they don't make their own, but teaming up with Oculus to use their headsets on Xbox would be awesome. If MS isn't ready to dive into the VR market yet.

lxeasy6d ago

I think Microsoft has said in the past that they are keeping a close eye on VR. I know there are a lot of Windows 10 PCs that are compatible with VR, so I wouldn't be surprised if project Scarlet is also compatible with VR

Atanasrikard5d ago

They are already doing these things with HoloLens. You just don't hear about it because it has nothing to do with video games.

lxeasy6d ago

It was, but there are a lot of trolls out there who like to spread false rumors about Xbox

AngainorG7X6d ago

That's good, now make sure that we will have the most powerful console once again!

lxeasy6d ago

That'll be impressive if they message the most powerful console again

AngainorG7X6d ago

They MUST.

1) Most Powerful Console
2) 15 First Party Studios
3) Best Place to play 3rd Parties
4) Game Pass Ultimate
5) Elite Series 2.0
6) Xcloud

What else can we ask!?! ;)

lxeasy6d ago

I don't think they are done buying First Party Studios

AngainorG7X6d ago

No you are right, i expect something at the X019 event, if not sooner at Gamescom..

lxeasy6d ago

I believe XO19 is going to be in London. They're definitely planning something big

kohox6d ago

That tag line didn't work for them the first time, I don't know why you think that's the path to success.

lxeasy5d ago

not sure what tag line your talking about but Phil has spoken through his actions. whether you want to see this or not Xbox will be performing A LOT better Next Gen than it did this Gen. Phil is not done acquiring new studios and this time Microsoft is investing heavily in Xbox like never before.

MasterCornholio5d ago

Microsoft doesn't know if their system will be the most powerful. Because if they did they would have announced it last E3.

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