Alleged Xbox 'Stream Box' prototype appears online — what we know so far

Xbox stream box rumor
(Image credit: Post Up)

It’s no secret that Microsoft is betting on game streaming taking off in the future, and it won’t necessarily be on an Xbox. Which is why we’re interested in this new but rather tenuous rumor, suggesting an Xbox "Stream Box" is on the way.

Renders of this alleged prototype Xbox game streaming box were posted on Twitter by Post Up, and seem to originate from 4chan or a similar imageboard site. 

While we're skeptical of their legitimacy, the rendered images suggest such a streaming-focussed console could draw inspiration from the compact Xbox Series S

Judging from what Post Up has tweeted, this will be a very small device (slightly larger than a deck of cards) that can only be used to play games streamed from Microsoft's Xbox Cloud Gaming service, also referred to as xCloud. So you would have no access to any local titles, like you’d have on an Xbox Series S. 

However, it could also be a regular streaming box as well, with access to online streaming content — HBO Max and Disney Plus are the two mentioned.

The images also show off a variety of ports, including ethernet, HDMI, USB-C, and a front-facing USB-A port. The box will allegedly have Wi-Fi, will be compatible with any Xbox controller, and wireless keyboard and mouse support is apparently planned. Like the Xbox Series X and Series S, the rendered images show off a pairing button (next to the USB port) that will also allegedly act as an IR receiver.

So how likely is it that all this information is accurate? Microsoft has confirmed that it's been working on its own Xbox streaming devices. So a dedicated Xbox streaming box that costs significantly less than an Xbox console, makes total sense. Plus, the company Microsoft has confirmed that it is working with TV manufacturers to bring Xbox streaming to Smart TVs. 

But that doesn’t mean this information is legitimate, no matter how much sense it might make. The fact it appeared on an anonymous imageboard doesn’t actually do it any favors either. 

And if this information is correct, it may be a while before we hear anything anyway. Supposedly the Xbox Stream Box was due to arrive before the end of the year, but the global chip shortage may have put a damper on that.

So you might just have to stick with one of the many other devices capable of streaming Xbox games, like the Samsung Galaxy S2, or see if you can pick up a console during an Xbox Series X restock

Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.