I'm not one to report on wild rumors, but this one comes to us from Bloomberg which doesn't exactly have a record of jumping on every crazy video game story that floats down the river of speculation. Word on the street is that Microsoft is prepping its next Xbox console for a November 2013 release. Big surprise, I know! Still, it's nice to hear it from a source that's typically more reputable that your run of the mill Xbox4LyfeDudez.com kind of website. Here's the key quote:
The new device is planned for Thanksgiving and Christmas sales, said the people, who declined to be identified because the product road map is confidential. The software maker hasn’t decided whether to unveil the new Xbox at an industry event such as the E3 show in June, or a separate event devoted solely to the machine, one of the people said.
The rest of the article is an excuse to talk about Nintendo's newly released Wii U. But, back to the next Xbox: I think we can all agree that Microsoft and its third-party partners are eager to kick off the next generation of hardware. While Xbox 360s are still selling (the company moved 750,000 of them last week), you can feel that wind of change in the air that makes game publishers and hardware producers want to sell you the latest and greatest all over again. While Nintendo's Wii had been aging for years and desperately needed a successor, the Xbox 360 still has some time left before it starts to feel like it's falling behind. As for when to debut the new system, I'd like to see a reveal at E3 next year. Microsoft has clout going into the next generation of hardware at this point while Sony has to regroup to overcome the stigma of mistakes that the PlayStation 3 era ushered in for the company (don't get me wrong; I enjoy playing my PS3, but Sony management dropped the ball plenty of times over the past six years). Microsoft could easily "win" E3 if it brought its A-game to a new Xbox unveiling. No matter what happens, 2013 is going to be very interesting in the video game industry.