Some rumors seem to crop up repeatedly, leading to speculation of an inside source or leak: Multiple sources are talking about the possibility that the new Xbox may require an "always on" internet connection, which is problematic for some users. Stack.com says the latest reports suggest that fans may not have anything to worry about. A source recently told Ubergizmo, "You are not required to be connected to the Internet in order to play Durango games." Take this and all unverified reports with a grain of salt, but what a gamer will be able to do offline is still a question.
According to engadget.com multiple unnamed sources suggest the plan is to include an HDMI passthrough and guide overlay, similar to the method used by Google TV. There's no word on any possible IR blaster (or IR GamePad, Wii U-style) integration, but thanks to Microsoft's partnerships with cable TV providers, it's trying to provide integration that goes a "step further" than what we've seen so far. That includes Kinect control, with next generation hardware that can recognize when viewers have turned their heads away and pause video automatically.
Many sites are talking about the hardware, and when decoded, it seems the Durango will not have as much graphic processing power as the PS4: Reports say that Xbox 720 will be released with a graphics chip comparable to the AMD Radeon 7790, vs. PS4's custom 1.84 TFlops, AMD Radeon Graphics Core Next Engine. Durango is also rumored to come with 8GB GDDR5 RAM and 32 MB of ESRAM, compared to the PlayStation's unified 8GB GDDR5 RAM. The Kinect 2.0 will also reportedly get a major boost to help cut down on lag. But the controller is expected to remain essentially the same.
As always, the excitement will build when we find out more about new or revamped games, and actually get a look at the thing! May 21st is the day Microsoft is supposed to officially unveil the 720 or Durango, or whatever it gets called. Check back for updates on the specs and features as we find them out.
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