Introducing The Xbox 720 – Rumored Features, Release Date And Price

by Briley 33

The Xbox 720 is on its way!

Rumors have maddeningly drowned out the air waves, and it’s likely we will see the unveiling of Microsoft’s new Xbox console (what we currently know as the Xbox 720) sometime this year. Keep in mind that a product “unveil” is not the same thing as a product release, the new console is not expected to be released until sometime in late 2013 or later.

A plethora of rumors have listed coming features for the Xbox 720 and it can be quite hard to completely piece together what we know so far about the new console. We’ve done the work for you and have compiled a list of the most likely features to expect in the new Xbox 720 console.
Xbox 720

New Xbox 720 Features & Specs

Xbox 720 Graphics Processing Power

The biggest rumor pertaining to the Xbox 720’s graphical processing power is that the new console will include variations of AMD’s 6000 series GPUs. If there is any truth behind the rumor, that means the new Xbox will still be at least two generations behind the latest PC GPUs (with the AMD 8000 series soon to release). But the rumor, if confirmed would also mean the Xbox 720 would include a graphics processor that’s up to six times more powerful than the current Xbox 360 GPU.

New XboxIf the Xbox 720 does indeed get equipped with an AMD 6000 series GPU, that would also include support for DirectX 11, multi-display functionality and of course high-definition 3D content.

Xbox 720 Will No Longer Support Second Hand Games

One of the biggest, and most influential, features to be rumored for inclusion in the Xbox 720 is an implementation of unique security features that prevents playback of second hand game titles. While this information has in no way been confirmed by Microsoft, it’s certainly plausible that such a feature could be implemented in the Xbox 720.

Xbox 720If the rumors are true it would mean the end of the used game industry, and it would also mean gamers would only have the option to purchase games brand new – or not at all.

Some ways in which Microsoft could realistically implement such a feature includes removing disc drive support, adding integrated security features on the discs themselves, or using a retail code redemption system similar to many existing online play passes (which can be seen in most EA game titles).

Xbox 720 Will Run the Latest Version of Windows

It’s no secret that Microsoft is keen on adding multi-functional and cross platform support – they’ve been especially fond of such features ever since the release of Windows 7.

Windows LogoIt has been rumored that Microsoft will port Windows 8 (or the latest Windows version) to the new Xbox 720 thus offering cross platform support for use with Windows Phone devices, Windows based computers and subsequent Microsoft Windows platforms like future portable tablets.

The Xbox 360 currently supports media sharing with Windows 7 based PCs and also takes advantage of the Windows Media Center application showing that we could very likely see a similar media sharing system on the new console. Although, if such a media system were implemented or even adopted for the Xbox 720, the likelihood of a Windows OS appearing on the new console would lessen.

Microsoft’s use of closed source OS, or unique software systems for previous consoles is well known. It’s highly unlikely that we will see a Windows based OS on a home console in the near future simply because of the options it would open up for system hacks or modifications – which Microsoft has been and will always be strongly against. Microsoft has since warmed up to the idea of public mods, by releasing a developers toolkit for the Kinect accessory which is compatible with PCs. It’s still highly unlikely that Microsoft will welcome such support in future consoles- there’s too much liability related to piracy.

Xbox 720 Future Disc Format

Blu Ray DiscThere has also been a floating rumor that the Xbox 720 will include Blu-Ray disc support, or may even integrate Blu-Ray disc support into its game releases – but again, there has been no official confirmation.

There’s even been an expressed desire for the return of HD-DVD’s, but seeing as support for the current console was dropped there’s no guarantee at all.

It is definitely true that Microsoft will be looking into alternate media formats especially if they decide to drop second hand game support. The possibility even exists that Microsoft will drop external media support altogether, going with a download-only marketing plan.

Xbox 720 Storage Support

The current Xbox 360 was recently given cloud storage features for use with active Xbox Live gold accounts, which allows users to access saved games and stored data via any console that has internet access.

Consumers are still wary of a cloud storage system that completely eliminates the need for local storage, so it’s likely the Xbox 720 will include a mixture of cloud storage and local storage features.

Xbox Mock-upIf Microsoft decides to truly implement the security features preventing used games and eliminate the use of discs in the new console then a large amount of storage space will be needed. Most modern games take at least 4GB of storage space, which is no small amount. New games, especially games that use even higher definition textures and graphics, would take even more storage space akin to what we’re currently seeing on modern PCs (12GB+).

If a need for more storage space arises there will be no possible solution other than to include local storage options, which would ultimately result in larger hard-drives being bundled with the Xbox 720. Hopefully this would also translate to Microsoft opening up storage options to allow third-party hard drives and external storage options like what is seen in the current PS3 model. Microsoft does currently allow users to take advantage of external storage drives on the Xbox 360, but there are limitations to what the external drives can do – one of them being Xbox 360 games cannot be installed to external drives.

Xbox 720 Game Controller

The Xbox 720 will likely include integrated Kinect support or support for a similar external device but there is still a need (and high demand) for physical game controllers.

The Xbox 720 controller would most likely follow suit with the current Xbox theme, ultimately meaning the future controllers would look and function in the same manner as the Xbox 360’s. It’s possible that Microsoft would change the form and function slightly, but adopting a completely new controller design could enrage fans.

So basically, Microsoft will probably use a similar controller design with new functions built in like media playback buttons, a unique Xbox Kinect launcher or something similar.

New Xbox 720 Release Date

Xbox 720 ConceptThe release date rumors for the Xbox 720 are all over the place, there are current hints at a 2012 unveil compounded by other statements that claim no unveil will take place this year.

If the Xbox 720 does get a 2012 unveil, it would mean the console would likely be released late 2013 or early 2014.

But Microsoft has previously given the Xbox 360 an estimated ten year life span, and considering the console was released in 2005 it could very well be sometime in 2015 before we see a successor.

Let’s hope we don’t have to wait until 2015 for the Xbox 720, but you never know…

New Xbox 720 Pricing Plans

If Microsoft upgrades the hardware significantly in the Xbox 720, which is likely, the new console will definitely receive a price hike.

Xbox PrestigeJudging by how much the original Xbox 360 cost at release, and by using an estimated amount of how much consumers will be willing to pay, the new console will likely be somewhere in the $599-$699 range.

Of course this pricing plan will be considered outrageous by many, especially when taking into account the price of current consoles but it’s easy to forget that modern consoles have been on shelves for years now. The Xbox 360 alone has been out for at least 6 years, which means even the newer console models have dated hardware, and the dated hardware contributes to the lower price.

New hardware is much more costly and will subsequently drive the base new Xbox price up higher.

So there you have it, an up-to-date list on all the most likely features to be included in the Xbox 720. This post will be updated accordingly as new information is released, so keep checking back!

* Xbox Evolution Images Courtesy of Yanko Design, by Joseph Dumary

Comments (33)

  1. Really dont think the idea of getting rid of second hand games will go down well with everyone,and if they go ahead with that idea i can see that putting people off buying the console.Other than that mus say it looks like this console will blow sony out of the water.

    1. Free ps3, I would have to agree about it blowing Sony out of the water, as of today’s aspects yes, but do you really think that Sony isn’t working on a PS4 as we speak. I’m sure they know Xbox is working on a new console, so you know that they would be researching or currently building a upgrade or new console themselves.

      1. @tony73 actually just read an article about the ps3 supposedly maybe being released later 2012 including up to a 1.5 tb hardrive and massive upgrades to pretty much everything they could think of on it.

  2. Honestly, I don’t think I would really consider buying it, seeing as how I’ve already put so much money and time into the 360. If they where smart, they would just keep the 360, but make it better over time, like the introduction of the slim. Gradually upgrade the tech in it and whatnot, keep making new updates. If they do come out with a new console, I’d probably only buy it if it had backwards compatibility with 360 games, AND kept your same live account.

    1. @RyanSears

      I don’t see any reason as to why they wouldn’t keep your same Live account. For one, a lot of that information is supposed to be cloud based, and will likely EASILY transfer over to a new console. Kind of like how you can use your xbox live account on Windows, and will be able too on Windows 8

      1. @MitchellRFoster @RyanSears If I’m correct in saying, the reason why your Windows Live account works on different pieces of software, and technology is simply because it allows the database connection to allow you to access your account. They will not remove accounts just because you upgraded your equipment – everyone will rage. Not only that, you wouldn’t be able to use on many of Microsoft’s websites and software as it would be deleted as a result of buying an upgraded xbox.So, basically, yes you’d be able to use the same Windows Live account. You’d more than likely keep your XBOX Live account, with your game statistics and everything. For things like Call of Duty, you may need to re-download your Map Pack as this gets saved onto the Hard Drive but that does not mean repurchasing. It is more than likely it’ll be backwards compatible too (pretty much every console has some form of backwards compatibility, except perhaps the early generation of consoles)

  3. well as I have never really been a huge xbox fan myself this just strengthen’s my idea’s on why I would rather play a ps3 over an x-box the way the gaming industry is set up anymore there isn’t any security in what you purchase anymore if I buy a game and decide I don’t like it after a couple week’s I can’t take it back and get a full refund most times they don’t offer full enough demo’s either to realy experience game content style and playability anymore either like it used to be years and year’s ago.

    Removing the ability to play used game’s is only gonna hurt them in that decision lots of if not around 75% or more of console gamer’s have bought and played used game’s before the companies releasing them charge a premium to buy the game then a monthly fee to play online if there is any online content (not to mention x-box live monthly fee) as well as another fee to keep up with the content if anymore is released for said game in the future which all in all could end up coming to around 100$ to play one single game’s full content. This is why I have always prefferred ps3’s online play the mere fact that they don’t charge you another 10-20-30-40$ dollar’s a month to play your game with friend’s after youve already purchased the game itself and any possible expansion pack’s to go with it. They even promote playing older game’s by offering them for download and reverse compabability with older models of the console’s older games.

    1. @socalgamerguy Sony is looking at the same feature.

  4. A $700 console and no second hand games? No thank you. You could buy a PC for that and have a much better gaming experience than what xbox offers

    1.  @JoeMorphew I highly don’t think it will be 700$  the new slim was already out of the park and it only mad about 10,000 sale the rest were older xboxes on warranty breaking. and its not going gto come out with no second hand tHAT WOULD BE IMPOSSIBLE. NOT only stupid they wouldnt make any sales at all. and thet probly wont make a another concle since kinect  Lanched not to long ago and you cant for get winter 2012 halo 4 is coming out so it wont come out in 2013

    2.  @JoeMorphew
      It ain’t going to cost no $ 700.00, no disk drive probably means $ 449.00 for Base and $ 549.00 for Elite Model.

  5. Well basically I’ve been an Xbox player over Sony for much of the time but 700 and no second hand games is retarded. That would mean you gotta throw away games you don’t like since you won’t be able to give them away or sell them which turns around to me plainly just going back to Sony. Some of my favorite titles are Xbox but with this they’ll run themselves into the ground. I guess a good thing since I don’t really care for Microsoft for the most part.

    1. @BrianLewis1

      No one should jump to conclusions. A great deal of manpower and capital goes into the the marketing, development and production of any such console. This is a multi-billion dollar industry and companies don’t make stupid decisions that could drastically jeopardize their sales. It is likely MS will release a new console, whether or not its called the “Xbox720”, and very well could be just a pumped up version of the 360; the system will probably be backward compatible and allow for all the feature plus more that you see in the current model. It is unlikely that MS will try to discourage all the effort it has embedded its current gaming experience among players and families, then simply flip the switch off and force the move. Sure at some point within the next 3 to 5 years we will all have the opportunity to experience a whole new level of gaming, but that will be introduced at a favorable rate. Customers will be ready to except the new levels of pricing, if any, to justify upgraded features.

    2. @BrianLewis1 I really don’t think Microsoft will eliminate the use of discs, due to backwards compatibility – it may be possible they will encourage the idea of downloading games onto the system. I, myself prefer the use of discs. Disabling use of Second Hand games may also be a bitch if you went to a friends house and wanted to play your games there (you wouldn’t be able to). In my opinion, if you decided to download the game from the disc, then the system should wipe the disc in order to prevent many people having a copy of the game entirely free. Though that is just my opinion, others may not agree with that.

    3. @BrianLewis1 Sony is also rumored to implement a no used game feature.
      And I for one will be pissed if GameStop closes because of this feature.

  6. lol….the new xbox is coming out this year, 2012, in less than 8-9 months, how can people honestly think that peice of junk, sub-hd, jaggie ridden, horrible framerate Dinosaur can go another 21 months, the ps3 is DEAD too, everyone is moving to pc, the pc now controls over 45% of all gaming marketshare, steam alone has 45 million accounts, the wii takes up another 25% and sony and microsoft are left fighting in the ruins of consoles over a measly 1/4 of the market.
    If Sony and MS do not drop their new consoles soon, they may never make new consoles at all and go the way of atari and sega, just making games. Google and Apple and Nintendo will be the Big 3. Sony is losing its ass every quater and microsofts game division is constantly in the red.

  7. i don’t care if MS do release another console. i’m not buying it. their half arsed customer support and stupidly expensive arcade games have done it for me. i’m, going Sony or PC. Screw Bill gates and his pension.


  9. I Don’t see MS. Selling it for more than $ 399.99 for the base model and probably no more than $ 499.99 for the Elite
    model.  They know that the average person isn’t going to shell out more than that, i am sure everyone learned from what Sony did with the PS3.  Sony’s PS3 didn’t take off till it reached the $ 300.00 range, so i think they will be wise on their priceing.  As
    for the used games issue, it doesn’t matter because people won’t pay outragous prices for new games, they will hold out till the price drops to their price range.   The gameing industry is going to find out sooner than later that over priceing games is going to stunt the market growth.

  10. I think not allowing second hand games would end up being a nightmare for MS.  If my XBOX 720 breaks, and needs to be replaced, then MS would have to replace all of the owners games as well.  Basically, if my 720 were to break (and it were under warrenty), MS would need to replace it and I would not be able to play my own games on my own (new) xbox unless MS replaced all my games as well.  I think the whole gaming process relies on the used gaming system.  I don’t see this rumor being true.

    1.  @Replace_the_o 
      If they implemented this, it would be fairly easy to maintain what games you own. The games could have unique IDs for each copy, attaching themselves to your online account or to a local account. Also, they could even remove the disc drive and make all games downloadable….Just like how Steam and Origin works.

  11. If there were some kinda “no used games” feature i will switch to sony in an instance.

    1.  @MarioRodriguez Id like to state that Sony has the same plans with the PS4…Same rumors, same probability to get screwed over..Its not just MS thats making a move out of the used game industry.. its ALL companies that are making the move out.. The used game industry is exactly why games are being charged for so much.. and why devs are forced to make DLCs that cost a nice little chunk of change.

    2. @MarioRodriguez Sony is looking into the feature as well.
      It’s a rather stupid. Although FBI is actually the first I’ve heard of Microsoft doing it.

    3. @MarioRodriguez Sony is looking into the feature as well.
      It’s a rather stupid. Although this is actually the first I’ve heard of Microsoft doing it.

    4. @MarioRodriguez
      used games are why you pay 60 for a game… developers only profit from new game sales. every used game bought divides the income per user the average game is sold 4 times that’s a actual cost of $15 per user going to developers.

  12. this is from slaindeadZomB. now about the xbox 720 I happened read up on the comments posted here about the stupid idea that Microsoft has about the xbox720.and when your talking about making the kind of changes I read about for the xbox720 I as a gamer can only say that whatever  ideas were discussed in the Microsoft thinking room  are infected thoughts  brought about by a virus that cannot be cured by any medicine or vaccine.hell somebody has to tell Microsoft that thier microsoft essential program couldnt prevent a virus from infecting their mental processes and they need to understand that there is no cure for that virus and that no anti virus program can help them with this type of infection because it hasnt been developed yet not even norton nor mcafee can help them however there is only one solution for their wild and crazy concoction to replace that lingering flavor of the xbox360 with the bitter tasting taste of the xbox720. from the description of the possible features of the 720 its like having a cup of black coffee no milk no sugar for the first time in your life yuck! or like mechanic accidently mistaking a cup of motor oil for a cup of coffee and taking a sip. now let me put it this way dont do it microsoft whoever thought up that idea is trying to put you out of business.Infact he or she is your virus unless of course you really are trying to weasle out of the gaming industry which Isincerely doubt very much please rethink your approach to the matter of the xbox720 cause its a no brainer.

  13. I was searching for my answer from different sites. But I found my answer on two sites yet. One is this and the other is

  14. they will ship in 500g and 1tb models the cost per gig is low in off the shelf orders… online download will be encouraged and  priced lower give the guaranty that anyone else that wants the game will need to buy a new game which actually goes to the developers unlike used games that only pay GameStop. the current $60+ per disk cost is entirely from used game sales. under half of those games sell as new so developers in actuality are selling at well under $30 per disk use. so you could potentially expect that type of price cut.

  15. still not seeing enough features that make me want to “upgrade” to this for now i am happy with my halo 4 360

  16. it pretty stupid for a console with no second hand games! and they need to try it again

  17. If Microsoft thinks people will shell out 5 to 6 hundred bucks for what basically amounts to a suped-up 360 , they’re nuts. I’d go 3, maybe 4 tops. Ask Sony how that high price plan worked for the PS3 initially.
    The idea of securing game content to the point where you can only purchase new games (probably meaning download only) is an interesting one, and something I’m not entirely against. I say ‘not entirely’ because I’d be for it only if it was done right, and by that I mean a decrease in new game prices ($60 is just crazy and has been crazy for years. That’s more than a quarter of the cost of the current 360 system!), and cinreased storage option (games run at about 4 GB now, potentially double that for a new systems game, especially if they’re on Blu-Ray), and that the game ID be attached to your Gamertag, NOT to the actualy system (see the Wii U for why THAT sucks).

  18. The availability of downloadable content, specifically when it comes to “new” games, has improved quite a bit over the last few years (maybe in direct relation to this possible, and likely, eventuality that’s being hinted at by MS?), to the point where I have bought ony ONE new physical copy of a game (COD: BO 2, because I’m impatient and didn’t want to wait). If MS could cut down that time gap to even a month, I’d wait to download instead of buy a physical copy. Downloadable games take up far less physical space (read NO SPACE) than their downloadable counterparts, and are more easily and quicly accessed, especially when jumping from one game to another. Would be nice if MS would create a system where you could have more than one game running concurrently so you could jump back and forth between games right wehere you left off, sort of the way apps work on a tablet or phone). This, too, has been i the rumor mill for the next iteration of Xbox hardware.
    Only time will tell. But in the end MS will have to play it’s cards right (and intelligently) to convince it’s massive 360 userbase to head for greener (monetary pun intended) pastures.

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