The official story started last year when Xbox Chief Phil Spencer told the thousands of attendees at E3 2018 that the console – or, rather, series of consoles is in development: “Our hardware team is deep into developing the next generation of Xbox consoles, where we will once again deliver on our commitment to set the benchmark for console gaming.”
As it happens, both Microsoft and Sony are too. Indeed, Microsoft has confirmed that work on the Xbox Two, currently codenamed ‘Scarlett,’ is well underway. This new family of consoles will have staunch competition from Sony, Google, and Slightly Mad Studios in the form of the PlayStation 5, the Stadia, and the Mad Box.
The family of in-development devices (codename “Scarlett”) will reportedly make use of Zen 2 architecture, as well as AMD’s next-generation GPU architecture. In other words, this will be a completely new generation of consoles, as opposed to the Xbox One X ‘half-step.’ The picture that is beginning to emerge, then, is of a family of consoles that can manage 4K gaming at as high a frame-rate as physically possible.
In keeping with previous console releases, we imagine Microsoft is aiming for a late November launch, just in time for Christmas next year. Of course, plans can be derailed and launches can be delayed, so don’t assume that everything is set in stone.