While Xbox 720 rumours
have been circulating for quite some time, hopes of another, different Xbox related device were kindled recently, with new rumours emerging that Microsoft was planning to officially enter the handheld gaming space with an Xbox Surface.
If true, indications are that this would combine the portability of a 7” tablet form factor with the Xbox 360’s gaming focus.
According to The Verge
, leaked details suggest the device will probably run on a custom ARM processor and a custom Windows kernel rather than a full version of Microsoft’s latest operating system, Windows 8. The Xbox Surface is also believed to probably be manufactured alongside the company’s new Surface tablets, and if genuine, make its appearance ahead of the next Xbox (roundly dubbed the Xbox 720
While actual specifications have not been detailed, the International Business Times
has alluded to another leak of Xbox and Kinect related documentation earlier this year
, that pegged the Xbox Surface as having a 1280 x 70 resolution, 288 MB of RLDRAM 2, an SD card slot, and of course, wireless connectivity.
Moving on to dual screen
To us, the introduction of a portable Xbox device is a no brainer, and one of those developments we’ve practically pined for quite some time. While Sony has its PS Vita
, Nintendo its 3DS XL
, and Apple’s latest iPad (the fourth generation
) is apparently a games powerhouse
(which we suspect may well eventually become true for the iPad Mini
’s successors as well), the Xbox has been absent on this front.
Much like the popularity of the Wii’s motion controls compelled Microsoft and Sony to introduce their Kinect and Move controllers respectively, it could be very possible that the companies are similarly setting their sights on dual screen gaming as being ‘the next big thing’.
Indeed, the forthcoming Wii U
is predicated on this, as the Wii U GamePad
boasts a 6.2” touch screen that offers an additional screen to players, with some interesting uses. Already, the PS Vita is similarly moving
in that direction as well, with its cross play offerings.
To the point
It doesn’t happen often, but we are inclined to put this rumour in the ‘very likely’ column, if for no other reason than the fact that Microsoft has already acknowledged the viability of multi-screen entertainment, as evidenced by its Smart Glass forays
, and a new found love of hardware manufacturing
Even if you are of the opinion that dedicated portable consoles have little place in a smartphone and tablet world for their original purpose (gaming on the go), dual screen interactive entertainment may just rekindle the allure of such devices, not only for manufacturers and game developers, but for users as well.