Microsoft Source Claims Xbox 720 Arriving in 2013

For a while we've seen speculation and insider-based rumors that point to a June 2013 reveal of the next-generation, Windows 8-based Xbox console, the Xbox Next, Xbox Loop or Xbox 720, whatever it's called. It will officially come out of the closet during E3 2013 and then likely ship towards the end of the year. It will also feature an OS based on Windows 8, essentially nuking any rumor claiming the console will be available before September of 2012.

The 2013 release schedule is based on two factors. First, a supposed leaked roadmap pins the "Loop" launch down to Build 2013. So far this roadmap has been nearly dead on, previously pointing out that the public beta of Windows 8 would launch sometime around CES 2012 -- Microsoft actually confirmed the date to be February.

Second, information provided by a range of sources involved with the project including component suppliers and middleware firms point to a Build 2013 release of the console. CNET reports that a source on the actual Xbox team has confirmed the 2013 timeframe although Microsoft prime has decline to comment. Still, there's a good chance we'll get some kind of tease during CES 2012 (January) and then at E3 2012 (June) while the company releases the Xbox SDK and reveals a 3rd-generation Kinect device.

Last week Microsoft released an updated interface for the Xbox 360 console, integrating the Metro style used in Windows Phone 7 and the upcoming Windows 8. The company is shooting to provide a single user experience across four specific screens -- desktop, tablet, living room TV and smartphones -- on a visual and software standpoint. This will be easier to achieve once the company releases the next Xbox platform and Windows Phone 8 which supposedly will feature a Windows 8 core.

Wednesday brought reports that Xbox design and experience group leader and Microsoft executive Don Coyner has been replaced by Emma Williams, the latter of which helped design the just-launched UI makeover. Coyner has guided the console's brand and design strategy since the console's inception more than a decade ago, and even wanted to provide a consistent user experience as seen with Apple's products.

But according to sources, Coyner is no longer in charge, but he also hasn't turned in his resignation. It's unclear as to why he is no longer heading the Xbox project, or what his next role at Microsoft will be. Williams however, now the general manager of Xbox Experiences for Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business, will be tasked with guiding the Xbox brand and strategy as the group moves forward to launch the third-generation console. She calls the new Xbox interface a "game changer," especially when Kinect is in use.

"It’s radically different from what people are used to today, and from anything else in the industry," Williams said. "No single device has put all the entertainment people want in the living room in one place like this, or delivered it in such a fun way where people can connect in a relaxed way with a gesture or the power of their own voice."

"Science fiction has become science fact," Williams added.

Kevin started taking PCs apart in the 90s when Quake was on the way and his PC lacked the required components. Since then, he’s loved all things PC-related and cool gadgets ranging from the New Nintendo 3DS to Android tablets. He is currently a contributor at Digital Trends, writing about everything from computers to how-to content on Windows and Macs to reviews of the latest laptops from HP, Dell, Lenovo, and more. 

  • Brandon S
    Sounds good. Hopefully they overhauled it compared to the 360 and again hopefully it will have a much lower failure rate that the 360.
  • N.Broekhuijsen
    Late 2005 the 360 was launched... Late 2013 the 720 will come...

    That's an 8 year lifetime... you can raise a small child in that time...
  • amk-aka-Phantom
    Sick of new trend to base games around the controls - touchscreen, accelerometer, gyroscope, Kinect... FFS, I only want games with graphics, gameplay and storyline, I don't give a $h!t about how "cool" and "innovative" the controller is. So screw you, 720, but then again, did I expect anything different? :D
  • tomfreak
    I hope the GPU can at least faster than my GTX570.
  • giovanni86
    Well there goes the 2012 hype, on to my 2012 PC build which will crush the xbox 720 even if comes out a year after. I was really hoping for a 2012 release, not that i wouldn't have built a PC in that time frame as well just would of made more sense, these long life cycles are really slowing down the industry as a whole since consoles control the market on innovation. Its like buying a Honda and getting the same model with the same features for 8 years.. Ridiculous.
    TomfreakI hope the GPU can at least faster than my GTX570.I hope it's better than GTX580s in Triple SLI mode and fully capable of playing games taking full advantage of the Unreal 4 engine.

    I also hope they change the name a bit. "720" might look a bit "dated", as it pertains to resolution. Maybe the XBOX 1080?

    Hopefully it will have: Kinect built in, backward compatibility with XBOX and XBOX 360 games

    Also, I hope they port more XBOX games (like the newer versions of Halo) to PC.
  • I will stick to my PC and HTPC for the moment thanks.
  • secolliyn
    It is about time but I think they are doing it all wrong again and they will most likely continue doing it wrong... Now I'm not saying I know how they should be done but I have a few ideas that could make things better

    #1 Bring out a base console every 10 years
    Reason: With so many cores they will have on Chip you really don't need that much more horsepower PC these days don't use all 4 Cores let alone an I7 920 with Hyper-threading simulating 8 Cores

    #2 with in those 10 years once a year release a user upgradeable video card
    Reason: This will stop the gap we are seeing now consoles are 12 Generations behind what PC builders can get and by the time new consoles come out we will be looking at 14-15 Gens

    This is how they can be Easily Implemented
    have 3 Choices Good, Better ,Best
    when the new line comes up get rid of Good shift those down and add one more powerful card as best.

    Next so you don't confuse people
    Rank Video games on said system a 1.1 would be launch video cards at least the Good video card to play where as a 1.3 would be launch video cards Best video card in lineup with the next cards come out 2.X,3.X Ect Ect Ect
    This will lead to better consoles it may put more pressure on Game makers but they are big boys they can handle it and it gives them a better market for games

    We all have friends that praise consoles for what good graphics they have.... all of my friends have been over and seen what my 5770 can show with with Tessellation enabled and they are blown away and they always ask the same question When will my PS3/XBOX be able to do that? and i tell them wait until the PS4/Next xbox and then maybe it will be able to do it
  • mauller07
    secolliynIt is about time but I think they are doing it all wrong again and they will most likely continue doing it wrong... Bring out a base console every 10 years Reason: With so many cores they will have on Chip you really don't need that much more horsepower PC these days don't use all 4 Cores with in those 10 years once a year release a user upgradeable video This will stop the gap we are seeing now consoles are behind what PC builders can get

    Essentially what you are saying is the basics of what a PC is, the best way they could do it is to make a basic PC with a set specification, have deals with the manufacturers to continue making and supporting the specific parts and have all games for this PC as the minimum requirements. they could even release for this PC a specific OS that allows the games to be hot playable from disc rather than HDD installed if it was to be used on a fully functional PC OS to cater to the living room and console style playing.

    a system like this would maintain backwards compatibility and also allow future upgrades if the user wished. but console manufacturers would never do this because they prefer the money they make on their closed systems.

    And the mention on 4 core processors, a lot of new games can utilise or even need 4 cores to function at their best, the xbox 360 even has 3 cores in its CPU
  • shin0bi272
    Cool! Maybe now we can get some good DX11 pc games... since pc exclusives are few and far between now a days.