Here's when you can expect next-gen Xbox consoles and Surface devices

The Xbox One X is Microsoft's most powerful console ever.
The Xbox One X is Microsoft's most powerful console ever.

Image: Adam Rosenberg / Mashable

If you're thinking about selling your Xbox One because a new release is imminent, you may not want to unplug it from your TV just yet.

A new report from Thurrott, a tech blog that's previously leaked accurate information about unannounced Microsoft products, claims the next Xbox won't arrive until 2020. The site also obtained details on next-gen Microsoft Surface devices, including when a new Surface Pro will be launched.

At E3 this year, Xbox boss Phil Spencer openly said Microsoft was hard at work on the next-gen Xbox.

"The same team that delivered unprecedented performance with Xbox One X is deep into architecting the next Xbox consoles, where we will once again deliver on our commitment to set the benchmark for console gaming," Spencer said during a media briefing.

Note Spencer's wording: Xbox consoles — plural. This could mean Microsoft is planning to release several different versions of a new Xbox — prior to the Xbox One's launch, a smaller and cheaper set-top box Xbox was rumored, but it never materialized — or it could mean the company's simply planning out the roadmap for Xbox consoles that'll come years down the road after the next one ships.

Aside from a codename "Scarlett," we know nothing else about the next Xbox. But we can take a few guesses ourselves based on the current Xbox One X and Microsoft's work on a game streaming service.

  • It'll be more powerful than the Xbox One X (it's not gonna be weaker, that's for sure), so expect at least 4K and HDR support

  • Microsoft's game-streaming service could be central to it much like Xbox Live was to the original Xbox

  • It'll likely be backward compatible with Xbox One games

  • It'll probably have a new Halo and Gears game for it

New Surface devices

The Surface Pro is due for an update.

The Surface Pro is due for an update.

Image: lili sams/mashable

Xbox may be Microsoft's most popular hardware product, but the Surfaces are reportedly due for some much-needed love soon, too.

In a separate Thurrot report, the tech blog's sources claim the next Surface Pro, codenamed "Carmel," is in development, although there's no timeline for when it'll be released or what kind of updates Microsoft's looking to give it.

The blog also corroborates an earlier report from Bloomberg about a cheaper "low-cost" Surface tablet due by the end of the year. The device, codenamed "Libra," is reportedly expected to compete with Apple's iPad Pro and could sell for as low as $400.

Finally, there are murmurs about a dual-screened device, codenamed "Andromeda." It's unclear what Microsoft's planning with Andromeda, but Thurrot suggests it could be a reference design related to the Intel's recently announced dual-screen "Tiger Rapids" prototype devices. Whatever Andromeda turns out to be, Microsoft will reportedly announce it by the end of this year as well.

That leaves questions all around for the Surface Laptop and Surface Studio? Will they get updates? The Thurrott report claims documentation suggests the Surface Laptop will get revamped, but no word on the desktop Studio.

The Surface Laptop was one of the best laptops of 2017.

The Surface Laptop was one of the best laptops of 2017.

Image: AP/REX/Shutterstock

So, new Xboxes and new Surface devices are coming. This is good news for gamers and PC users. Microsoft has slowly built a formidable hardware empire with its game consoles and home-designed computers.

With new Xboxes, Microsoft has a shot at going on the offense against Sony, which shot right out of the gate with the PlayStation 4 and has left the Xbox One in its dust ever since. Sony has reportedly sold about 79.5 million PS4 consoles worldwide, while Microsoft has only sold about 37.5 million Xbox Ones, according to VGChartz.

New Surface products will also put the heat on Apple and other PC makers to stay competitive with products that are either powerful, affordable, or have new form factors. 

We're halfway through 2018 and have yet to see any cool new devices from the likes fo Apple or Microsoft. The second half, however, could be a whole new ball game to look forward to if the rumors are true. 

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