Next Xbox leak points to always online requirement

Screengrabs seemingly taken from the Durango Xbox Development Kit describe Microsoft’s upcoming console as an always online device, as has previously been rumoured.

Posted on VGLeaks, one of the more reliable sources of next-gen information in the run up to the PS4 reveal last month, the documentation has been described as “entirely legitimate” by anEdge source, although it was said to have been provided to developers working with the console last year.

The “hardware overview” documentation states: “The console will be ready instantly when users want to play, and will always maintain a network connection so that console software and games are always current. With this “Always On, Always Connected” design, users will quickly and easily enjoy their connected entertainment experiences, with no waiting for the console to restart or install games.

“Every Durango console will have a hard drive, although its exact capacity has not been chosen. It will be large enough, however, to hold a large number of games. All games will be installed on the hard drive. Play from the optical disc will not be supported.

“Durango consoles will have a Blu-ray disc drive. Disc media will be used for distribution, but during gameplay, games will not use content from the optical disc. An installation system is being designed that will allow gamers to begin playing while the game is being installed on the hard drive rather than waiting until installation is complete.

“Every Durango console will be sold with a new high-fidelity Kinect sensor, which will be required for the system to operate,” it also says, latter adding: “The Durango controller will make the best-in-class Xbox 360 controller even better. It will have low-latency wireless connectivity to the console, and improved ergonomics. System interactions that use the controller will be simplified to make them easier for noncore gamers.”

Last month, Edge reported that games designed for the next Xbox “will require an internet connection in order to function”, and that all disc-based titles will include online activation codes with no value beyond their initial use, effectively eliminating the ability to play used games on the system.

It has been heavily rumoured that Microsoft will announce its next Xbox in late April. For more on the console, check out our Xbox 720 rumour round-up.


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