Microsoft to unveil next Xbox May 21, subsidized version for $300?By Matthew DeCarlo 20 comments
Speculation about Microsoft's next-generation console continues to mount as we approach its inevitable unveiling this spring or summer -- likely the former, according to new details from separate sources. It was previously believed that the company was preparing to introduce its latest machine toward the end of this month -- April 24 to be precise.
However, that date has reportedly been pushed back a few weeks. In episode 159 of What The Tech, Paul Thurrott of WinSuperSite.com revealed that the unveiling will now take place on Tuesday, May 21. Separately, Tom Warren of The Verge has spoken with folks familiar with the matter, and that date apparently checks out as being accurate.
It remains unclear what Microsoft has planned for the presentation, though Warren's sources say that it will be held at a small venue and focus on providing "the very first details" about the new Xbox, still known simply by its codename "Durango." Perhaps it will be similar to Sony's recent PlayStation 4 event, emphasizing content and features while reserving everything else -- including a glimpse at the console -- for E3.
Rumors have suggested that Microsoft wants to offer a subsidized version of Durango, building on its ongoing experiment with the Xbox 360. According to Thurrott, this is indeed the case. He's heard that a standard model will fetch about $500 while a subscription option will start at $300. We assume this would lock you into the equivalent of Xbox Live Gold for two years or more, though everything is obviously unconfirmed.
Along with introducing its latest platform during next month's event, Microsoft is expected to share its plans for the Xbox brand in general for 2013. At least one page of that playbook is reportedly dedicated to an updated version of the Xbox 360. Known as "Stingray" internally, Thurrott says the device will go for $99, which would put it in the territory of popular set-top media streaming boxes by Roku, Western Digital and others.