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Microsoft’s 2028 Xbox to be ‘cloud hybrid’ console, leaked documents reveal


Microsoft’s plans for a cloud-powered next-gen Xbox in 2028 reveal a bold vision for the future of gaming

A leaked document from the FTC v. Microsoft court battle has revealed Microsoft’s tentative plans for the next-generation Xbox, a “hybrid game platform” that would combine local hardware and cloud computing to create an unprecedented gaming experience.

Microsoft’s vision for the next-gen Xbox is to create a platform that can deliver deeper immersion and entirely new classes of game experiences by leveraging the combined power of the client and cloud. The company sees this system as being optimized for real-time gameplay and creators, and enabling new levels of performance beyond the capabilities of client hardware alone.


On the hardware side, Microsoft foresees things like next-gen DirectX ray tracing, dynamic global illumination, ML-based super resolution, micropolygon rendering optimization, and more. The system could also allow for different types of devices, ranging from relatively powerful consoles to “Thin OS… $99 consumer or handheld devices” that rely on xCloud computing.

“Hybrid compute” would presumably differ from regular cloud gaming by using hardware and cloud computing to display in-game elements simultaneously. For instance, primary characters would run on your local GPU, while NPCs, background elements, and more would be generated remotely. This would allow for more complex and detailed game worlds, as well as new gameplay opportunities.

Microsoft also sees heavy use of AI and machine learning (ML) in next-gen gaming. ML could be used to improve performance, game experiences, and player services. For example, ML could be used to power super resolution, frame rate interpretation, and latency compensation, as well as improve AI agents, codex, matchmaking, player ranking, safety & toxicity, personalization & discovery, and support services. ML could also be used to aid on the creator side via AI game testing, procedural content, physics, NLP dialogue, and live ops (engagement & retention management, monetization, cloud resource optimization).


The leaked document also suggests that Microsoft is considering using AMD Navi 5 graphics and Zen 6 CPU cores in the next-gen Xbox. However, the company is also considering Arm64 processors. In any case, Microsoft has already begun planning for the next-gen Xbox, with hardware design and hybrid game design starting in 2024. Dev kits are expected to be available by 2027, with shipping by 2028.

Microsoft’s vision for the next-gen Xbox is bold and ambitious. The company is committed to creating a platform that can deliver the best possible gaming experience, regardless of device. It will be interesting to see how this vision evolves over the next few years.


In addition to the above, here are some other thoughts on the leaked document:

  • The next-gen Xbox could be a game-changer for the gaming industry. By combining local hardware and cloud computing, Microsoft could create a platform that is capable of delivering truly immersive and next-level gaming experiences.
  • The next-gen Xbox could also be more affordable and accessible than traditional consoles. By offering a range of devices, from powerful consoles to low-cost handhelds, Microsoft could make gaming more accessible to a wider audience.
  • The next-gen Xbox could also be a boon for game developers. By providing a platform with powerful hardware and cloud computing capabilities, Microsoft could enable developers to create more ambitious and innovative games.

Overall, the leaked document provides a glimpse into Microsoft’s exciting vision for the future of gaming. The next-gen Xbox has the potential to revolutionize the way we play games.


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