It’s been widely reported that Microsoft is planning to release a second next-generation Xbox that is less powerful and lacks a physical media drive. Now, another report says that’s not entirely true.
The Verge’s Tom Warren, who is known for accurately reporting on unannounced Microsoft products, has stated that the CPU for the less-expensive next-gen Xbox is “the same speed as the Series X.” The console will have a different GPU frequency and CU count, however, Warren reported.
The second next-generation Xbox, rumored to be called the Xbox Series S, will have 7.5 GB of usable RAM, according Warren, and this is less than the Series X. Warren went on to say that this second console will target a resolution of up to 1440p, compared to 4K for the Xbox Series X.
I’ve been reporting on Xbox Lockhart having a slightly underclocked CPU, but I now believe it’s the same speed as Series X. Just different GPU frequencies and CU counts ?
— Tom Warren (@tomwarren) June 27, 2020
Xbox boss Phil Spencer told GameSpot that it might release additional next-gen Xbox SKUs, and this new console–reportedly codenamed Lockhart–may be among them. “Obviously, in the name ‘Series X,’ it gives us freedom to do other things with that name so that we can create descriptors when we need to,” Spencer said in December 2019, all but confirming multiple next-gen Xbox consoles are coming.
Spencer also alluded to the idea of Microsoft releasing a cheaper next-gen Xbox, saying the company can’t grow its gaming business by only targeting the consumer interested in high-end experiences.
“The number of people that are actually buying a console every generation isn’t growing dramatically, if at all,” Spencer said. “At one point you have to recognize that, okay, you can’t just lead with one device. You can’t just say, here’s an Xbox. I’m going to go sell this device to every single person and that’s what they’re going to play on. That just doesn’t work.”
For its part, Sony recently announced a digital-only PlayStation 5 model. It has the same guts as the regular PS5, and the same form factor–it just doesn’t have a disc drive. Sony has not announced a price point for the regular PS5 or the digital model, while Microsoft has yet to share any details on price as well.
Microsoft’s next big event is its July Xbox 20/20 showcase where it will reveal more details on Halo Infinite and other first-party games. Whether or not Microsoft has any hardware-related announcements for the show remains to be seen, however.