As the first company out of the gate in the latest generation of consoles, it would be only fitting that Microsoft unveil their next Xbox console some time soon, perhaps at E3 2011. Instead, the company has other plans. In an interview with Microsoft’s Xbox & Entertainment Director Stephen McGill, GamerZines found out that the company is not looking towards a new console, but instead wants to focus on improving the current 360 through software updates.
So soon after the launch of Kinect, the company’s controller answer to the motion question, Microsoft really has no need to begin looking towards the future with a new console. If Kinect ends up selling as well as Microsoft predicts it will, then the motion tech itself will serve as the next generation of the Xbox in place of a completely new piece of hardware. In this new state of gaming, the schism that exists across all of the platforms, and the increasing desire to gain gamers’ attention, makes it both advantageous and risky to come out with a new console. Succeed in your efforts and be rewarded handsomely, but failing today means extremely hard times.
As Microsoft sees it, the evolution of gaming is about bringing new experiences to a console, not about evolving the look or the chipset of the console. As McGill puts it,
“You’ll continue to see us bring amazing new experiences to the console, without you having to buy a brand new console. A couple of years ago we didn’t have movies, Sky, Facebook and Twitter – now we’ve got things like Kinect.”
Having only scratched the surface of all that Kinect is capable of, it is hard to push Microsoft to begin work on another console, no matter how desperately gamers may want one. If Kinect does end up being a failure, that will surely open up talk of moving past the 360, but at this juncture Kinect is your next gen console.
Do you feel that Microsoft should invest in the successor to the Xbox 360, or would you be satisfied with evolution through software updates? Is Kinect your Xbox 360 2?