Feature Article

What We Know About The Next-Gen Xbox Console, Scarlett

Xbox on.

Update: At E3 2019, the Xbox press conference revealed the new Xbox Scarlett. Seemingly a codename for now, Project Scarlett releases in Holiday 2020 alongside Halo Infinite. There's still a lot to find out, but Microsoft boasted about the specs being far beyond that of the Xbox One X.

The Xbox One has been around since 2013, which, scarily, is six years ago. Console cycles typically last between five and seven years, meaning we should be due a new Xbox pretty soon. However, there's the complicating factor that this generation included mid-cycle upgrades, the PS4 Pro and the Xbox One X.

Regardless, we know Microsoft is working on the next Xbox console, and there've been a fair few reports surrounding what to expect. Without further ado, let's dig into everything we know about the next Xbox.

What is the new Xbox?

Microsoft might not have unveiled its new Xbox just yet, but it is definitely working on it. The company confirmed as such during E3 last year. In fact, it could even be multiple consoles on the way. Xbox boss Phil Spencer said in June 2018 that Microsoft is "deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles where we will once again deliver on our commitment to set the benchmark for console gaming."

Of course, the pluralizing of 'console' could mean Spencer was referring in part to the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, which was announced just recently. However, the latter half of his quote--about setting the benchmark for console gaming--surely refers to a new generation, where it sounds as if Microsoft wants to come out swinging with the most powerful console available, just as it did with the Xbox One X.

Reports from Thurrott suggest the new Xbox consoles are being developed under the umbrella codename Scarlett. Two consoles are in the works, say the reports: one is a high-power machine codenamed Anaconda that will be approximately the same price as the PS5, while the other is a budget-orientated machine known as Lockhart. The latter is potentially a streaming-centric device that does not boast much processing power itself; rather, it will ostensibly utilize Microsoft's nascent xCloud technology to play games via the cloud.

Update: Xbox Scarlett is real. While Microsoft has so far only detailed one new device, we do know the codename is legitimate, and it could be that a second console is revealed at a later date.

When is the new Xbox's release date?

Microsoft hasn't spoken about its timeline for the new Xbox consoles' release date(s). However, the consoles are not expected to launch until Fall 2020. For comparison's sake, we don't precisely know when the PS5 will launch either, but in May 2018 the then-head of PlayStation, John Kodera, said that the PS5 was "three years" away. However, plans change, and it's also possible Kodera was merely trying to keep a lid on the rumors that were flying around at the time which were saying the PS5 would be released as soon as 2019.

What about E3 2019?

Of course, E3 2019 is just around the corner, so can we expect to hear more about the new Xbox consoles at the convention? The answer, according to a report from Jeux Video, is yes. The site states Microsoft plans to reveal its new Xbox consoles during its E3 2019 press conference. Of course, this is all conjecture for now, but Xbox boss Phil Spencer has stated the company intends to be "as big at E3" as it's ever been.

Do we know the new Xbox console specs and price?

Unlike Sony, Microsoft has so far kept quiet about the internal specifications of its new consoles. However, all the reports point to both Anaconda and Lockhart ditching hard drives in favor of the quicker solid state storage option--a move the PS5 is also making. Of course, if those reports are proven accurate and Lockhart is essentially a streaming box, it's likely the console will eschew a disc drive and state-of-the-art specs, relying instead on Microsoft's xCloud streaming service for its playing power. Jeux Video has reported the following specs for the two Scarlett consoles:

Xbox LockhartXbox Anaconda
CPUCustom eight coreCustom eight core
GPUCustom NAVI 4+ teraflopsCustom NAVI 12+ teraflops
RAM12 GB, GDDR616 GB, GDDR6
Storage1 TB SSD, 1 + GB / s1 TB SSD, 1 + GB / s

The site also reports the Anaconda price will be around $500, which is the same price the Xbox One X launched with in 2017. Unverified rumors from Reddit place Lockhart, meanwhile, at around $250, which would put it at the same price point as the newly-launched Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, which also forgoes a disc drive. These are yet to be substantiated by any reputable source, however.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

oscardayus

Oscar Dayus

Oscar is GameSpot's Staff Writer, and as the youngest member of the UK office he's usually the butt of the joke.
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