Last month saw rumors of a new PlayStation console coming this fall, and now we’re starting to hear rumblings that Microsoft is also getting into the new console game a little earlier than many of us were expecting. Kotaku first broke the news yesterday, indicating that Microsoft will be unveiling not one, n=but two new Xboxes at E3 next month.
Microsoft is preparing at least two new Xbox models for release in the next two years, sources tell Kotaku. Later this year we’ll see a cheaper, smaller Xbox One, and next year Microsoft will release a more powerful version of their premiere console.
The smaller, cheaper Xbox One is not a big surprise. Because console life cycles are usually so long, companies are able to refine their hardware to make it more efficient, come in a smaller package, and usually cut the price a bit before they’re ready to release a whole new console. Xbox 360 and PS3 each had 2 revisions before their successors hit the market, and the Wii even saw a revision as well.
Based on Sony’s intention to release a more powerful PS4 this fall, it’s not surprising that Microsoft is answering with a beefed up Xbox One, but I am a little surprised that it’s rumored to be coming out next year and will miss the 2016 holiday quarter.
Microsoft is already well behind Sony in console sales since the launch of the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. Sony just announced they’ve sold 40 million PS4s, while current projections put Xbox One sales at right about 21 million units. Sony will also have a VR solution and (if the rumors are true) a more powerful console out this fall. Meanwhile, Microsoft will have both of those things as well, but they’ll be in 2017. Sony is making a boat load of money on PlayStation right now, and Microsoft continues to fall further and further behind. They need to do something to make this battle a little more competitive quickly.