Microsoft is reportedly working on a cheaper, streaming-focused game console
It will only use on-device hardware for basic computationsBy Cohen Coberly
Microsoft's upcoming next-gen "Project Scarlett" console may be getting all the attention, but a new report from Thurrott claims that the company is also working on a lower-cost, streaming-oriented device -- like targeted at those who can't or won't pay what will likely be a high up-front cost for Scarlett.
According to Thurrott, who was provided with this information by sources within Microsoft, says the key difference between this mystery device and other game streaming systems is that it will take more of a hybrid approach to the concept.
Instead of computing everything in the cloud, the console would handle lower-intensity tasks like collision detection and basic player movement locally, using its own (low-spec) hardware. In theory, this should boost performance overall while also minimizing latency; one of the biggest roadblocks other streaming platforms have faced over time.
So, how much will this mystery console cost? We don't know for sure, but Thurrott predicts it could start at around $60 due to the lack of onboard hardware. With a controller, the device might jump up to $80. For our part, it doesn't seem very likely that Microsoft will let a gaming console -- cloud or otherwise -- go for less than $100 (barring sales), but anything is possible.
We'll simply have to wait and see what the company has up its sleeve over the coming months. If a streaming based console truly is in the works, it would make sense for Microsoft to unveil it sooner rather than later -- perhaps sometime in early 2020.