Report: Origami "not a portable Xbox"

As Microsoft drags out its teaser campaign, the Associated Press confirms suspicions the device is merely an "ultra-mobile PC" with limited game and entertainment functionality.

Earlier this week, the game industry was rocked by word of the so-called Origami Project, a secret Microsoft device that appears to be a portable PC with gaming functionality. The rampant speculation was kick-started by a leaked video showing what looked like a minitablet PC running Halo. Microsoft confirmed the Origami Project video's authenticity to GameSpot, but said it was a year-old "concept video," and hinted the Halo footage was for demonstration purposes only.

Then, after promising revelations today on the teaser site origamiproject.com, Microsoft merely posted a new flash movie...which makes promises of more information to come. After asking, "Wondering where to find me?" the movie shows a montage of locations: a city skyline, tropical island, a snow-capped mountain, a subway system, the interior of a car, and a long shot of Rio de Janeiro. "I am everywhere you are...but never in the way" the site tells visitors via text, apparently promising a new level of portability in the device.

Then comes the tease. After posing the rhetorical question, "Who am I?," the site says, "find out...3.9.06..." Now it seems the public will have to wait another week for the official Origami unveiling, which appears to be coordinated with the CeBit PC trade expo, held from March 9 to 15 in Germany.

However, unofficial reports have already broken about what the Origami can and cannot do. This morning, the Associated Press ran an article citing a source inside Microsoft that confirms suspicions that the Origami is merely a new line of "ultra-mobile PCs" the size of a paperback book. It says that the line of devices is aimed at "tech-savvy consumers who want a smaller computer that is easy to take on vacation, in the subway or anywhere else where a full-sized PC would seem too bulky." As shown in the leaked video, Origami machines will feature a touch-sensitive screen a la Microsoft's tablet PC line, will run Windows XP, and will be priced lower than most full-size laptops, running from around $500 to $1,000.

If that price tag seems too low for a mobile PC with a high-end graphics chip--which would be necessary to run the Halo footage shown in the leaked concept video--that's because it is. The AP article says flat-out that the Origami is "not a portable version of Microsoft's Xbox videogame console," nor is it "a music player designed to take on Apple Computer Inc.'s mega-popular iPod." According to the source, the Origami will be "less powerful than full-fledged PCs," and won't have "advanced entertainment capabilities."

However, the AP article contradicts itself somewhat, quoting its source as saying that Microsoft expects consumers to use the Origami for "watching movies," presumably on DVD. That means that the device could have enough processing and graphics power to play older PC games that don't require a high-end GPU--think Civilization III on the go. It also raises the possibility that Microsoft is optimizing less demanding versions of semirecent PC games specifically for the platform, as is now rumored. However, Microsoft reps had not responded to requests for comment as of press time.

GameSpot will have more information when Microsoft divulges further details on the Origami Project next week.

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Discussion

178 comments
ZERObaker000
ZERObaker000

another thing... off topic but why do people get so heated over which gaming system is better...i like them both for their own features...i just don't understand why people who are all hardcore 360 or supafly bout ps3 and then bash the other company...loosen up guys seriously...games are meant for entertainment not for online comment riots

ZERObaker000
ZERObaker000

the rumors truly got my hopes up...i want an xbox but more like an xbox 90...1/4 the size of a regular xbox 360 and then mash all the good fun that an xbox would hold...if only if only

callumohare
callumohare

lmao... Oragami. boy, where'd that one go?

terdoo
terdoo

That sucks,I was hoping for a great xbox portable,well I GUESS you dont always get what you want right.

Zerofitz
Zerofitz

Just what the world needs, a hand-held that's over-sized and has a bunch of useless features. It also looks like it has "commercial failure" written all over it.

skitzocyko
skitzocyko

it is just a cheap portable pc alternative. a mini laptop.

chrisdojo
chrisdojo

i think the reports that say the origami is an "ipod killer" are rediculous. i'm guessing that this will go the way of the tablet pc. who wants to pay $1000 for something that big (small) that will be easy to break? m$ will only kill the ipod if they release something that is twice as better for half the price (which, in their right mind, won't do.....even though m$ does like to lose money when they sell things (xbox))

Mytharis
Mytharis

Yeah, sure. Ultraportable.

slayerofshadows
slayerofshadows

could have just been another attempt from microsoft to scare the opposition.

sugreev2001
sugreev2001

Good,theycan now save face.Next,maybe they'll come up with controller that looks like a TV remote codenamed "TVREMOTE".;-)

mkdc
mkdc

As long as it can play counter strike: source, i'll consider one seriously...

fantasy_freak_1
fantasy_freak_1

THANK GOD!!!! If Microsoft released a portable games console like that they would have to be stupider than all the anti-microsoft cartoons say they are. As for computer=related things, microsoft are pretty good in that area. This should be interesting.

JamaicanBadBoy
JamaicanBadBoy

yeah yes microsoft is okay but.......PS3 ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!OR SONY SAMETHING

SoberWarock
SoberWarock

OMG i just read the artical and saw the preview of it..and its so awsome but i got a psp which i really LOVE..and when i saw that this thing can play halo i was like "OMFG" the GRX must be better way better!!!! and its like a touch screen which made me SO SUPER SUPER JELOUS I AM JELOUS ....*AHHHHHHHHHHHHH*

gamespotr0cks
gamespotr0cks

I hope Sun, Apple and all the Linux companies sink this device as quickly as possible. For a laugh, here are my responses to the Origami teasers: Q: "Wondering where to find me?" A: Yeah, in the trash can! Q: "I am everywhere you are...but never in the way" A: You weigh too much, liar. Q: "Who am I?" A: Bill G's ticket to another $5 billion? I dunno btw, you DO know what Origami means right? It's the Japanese art of paper folding. It's not simple to do. Sometimes it's really frustrating. That's what I think this device will become. What a PR0PER name M$oft. You hit it right on da head :)

Cross_eye
Cross_eye

DarthUltima It doesn't look like it would be good for games anyways. That guy in the video wasn't even playing he was just shaking the thing around while a video of Halo was on it lol lol totally ture otherwise it wouldve been like *origami OS* insufficiunt memory (XD) "but i put in an 8 gig stick!" insufficient memory

sgallagher1969
sgallagher1969

Too bad they wont build it. I priced out everything parts wise (except power supply) and you can build a system for just over $300 retail. And thats using a cpu 2x more powerful, a HD 4X the size and 4X the ram. So let's see for about $300 retail we realisticly could have a portable DVD player, ipod, game system more powerful than the PSP, and tap into the entire library of current games!!!! Throw in an optional wireless access card for Xbox Live and you could play halo anywhere! If apple can sell a $300 video Ipod MS should ceartinly be able to build X2Go with out taking a loss, and continue to leverage revenues from continued sales of xbox games. And MS if you don 't want to build it how about licensing the rights to me??? (sorry about the multiple posts system was hanging)

sgallagher1969
sgallagher1969

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

offthechart
offthechart

we don't need anymore portable game systems

sgallagher1969
sgallagher1969

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

sgallagher1969
sgallagher1969

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

rl_41
rl_41

i have PSP, i wud still be interested in this, seems like something with potential, no matter how overdone the idea is.

doomsoth
doomsoth

I'm so glad that it's not.

V-Nine
V-Nine

Thank goodness its not a portable Xbox as I find the thing VERY hideous like a Tapwave gone awry. Hopefully the real thing will be big and heavy enough to fend off an attacker..like the original Xbox (long story) ;D

alcarazo9
alcarazo9

that sucks who wants a dumbed down pc , and if it cant ply halo its not worth it.

alcarazo9
alcarazo9

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Dayme
Dayme

good trick microsoft

ContraBandito
ContraBandito

Oh well, Its not going to be marketed at us anyway. This is obviously meant for business types. An alternative to the blackberry, without the phone features of course.

BullDogSquad
BullDogSquad

Im not crying. Im actually Glad. But when I do cry the tears are green. Its actually kind of cool!

KevComesRipping
KevComesRipping

Ah, man, really? Couldn't make that out from it being used as a NAVIGATIONAL DEVICE (EXTREEEEME SARCASM!!!!111!!!) I really thought it would be a portable gaming system!!! DANGIT!1!

XenonHID_VQ
XenonHID_VQ

The Xbox fanboys are crying right now... see all the green tears?

shunpei90
shunpei90

I think PSP will be better than this one.. even though I dun really support or like sony.. lol

d3L3710n
d3L3710n

Hm. Not too disappointing, but not too surprising either. Microsoft should clearly know that it's too late to enter into the so-called "mobile gaming" business. Well, to speculate what I mean, the PSP was--and I emphaszie, WAS--intended for gaming capabilities in the first place, but then it all became a portable, handheld CPU peripheral that you could play ROMs on, and a bunch of other stuff. So, it should make sense to Mircosoft that getting into the portable gaming world with a device such as the Origami would render it useless to the PSP in aforementioned aspects. But, I would like to admit that declaring it now as just a normal CPU peripheral without any primary gaming functions saved the Origami from any future competition that could instantly kill it.

gt4freak1985
gt4freak1985

Come on its microsoft! Theyll screw up again like they did witht the 360 (YES!). Come on just admitt that the 360 is junk. Its just a sooped up crapbox and thats all it ever will be! I laugh at the fact the fact that all Microsoft has to rely on is Halo which is just totally sad considering its truly not that great of a game! You xbox fanboys cant admit that the game is only okay! I am not totally huge in console cause of the stupid fanboys! The xbox fanboys are way worse than the sony fanboys! Xbox has what one game vs PS2 20+ badboys! Oh and by the way some xbox games use ps2 graphics and textures! hahahhahahah! Microsoft will suck untill Vista ships if they dont screw that up too!

cyprus646
cyprus646

Dosent this kind of remind u of "i love bees" ?

gaiden1024
gaiden1024

That's quite dissapointing , I think gaming would have been awesome on this device and isn't that the market MS has been talking about getting into ? A portable PC gaming console running standard desktop Windows. That sounds quite cool... Laptops aren't cut out for gaming by a long shot , so if someone actually put thought and effort into making this an uber game right that would rock :)