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Microsoft are reportedly launching a discless Xbone in 2019

Master Disaster
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According to Thurrott (who apparently have a good track record with rumours) Microsoft are gearing up to launch a version of the Xbox One console that won't have any optical media drive.

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In the wake of the news that Sony will not be attending E3 next year, Microsoft’s hardware plans for 2019 will likely be a huge win for the brand and for gamers. The company is planning to release an updated console next year, but this device will not be in the Scarlett family, according to people familiar with the company’s plans.

 

The Scarlett devices are Microsoft’s next-gen consoles and are not expected until 2020 but in 2019, the company is planning to release a disc-less console. And if this is making you nervous because you have a large collection of physical discs for your current Xbox, Microsoft has you covered.

They will also be launching a "disc to digital" programme which will allow users to trade in physical games for digital versions.

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In addition to the new console, there will be a ‘disc-to-digital’ program that, as the name states, turns your physical games into digital downloads. The idea is that you can take your disc to a participating retailer (like the Microsoft store) and trade in your disc for a digital download.

The goal is to reduce costs (it isn't but I'll get to that in the conclusion) with the goal cost somewhere around $200 per unit.

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The goal with the new console is to lower the price point for the hardware. Currently, it costs about $299 to buy into the Xbox One family of devices, Microsoft is looking to lower that price by possibly as much as $100; the new console price point is expected to be $200 or less.

Microsoft also have a revised Xbox coming with a disc drive as well.

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In addition, the company also has a revised Xbox One S SKU that is targeted for later in the year that focuses solely on cost reduction but does feature a disc-drive for those who still prefer the traditional way to buy your games. Microsoft is moving forward very carefully with this product as it knows that a sizeable portion of its users do prefer to buy physical games and not download them.

Microsoft still has to decide if it's next gen Xbox (codenamed Scarlett) will launch with a disc drive.

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As for Scarlett, Microsoft is still trying to decide if that console will include a disc drive but should be making the final decision here shortly.

Microsoft are apparently planning a spring 2019 release for this new device though that's not a firm release window.

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As for when the console will become available? I had initially heard in the spring of 2019 was the target as this device is well on its path to production. As for when Microsoft will greenlight the product for retail distribution, that’s still to be determined and even though they could still cancel the device at this time, I do expect it to become available sometime next year.

https://www.thurrott.com/xbox/192184/microsofts-building-a-disc-less-xbox-one-for-release-in-2019

 

This isn't about reducing costs, that's just a marketing ploy. It's about reducing piracy and removing the used market. If no one has physical discs then no one can copy them or sell them. Plus it has the added bonus of allowing Microsoft to push their subscription service to users, who wants to bet it will come with a 500GB hard drive and a months free Xbox Game Pass?

 

It's probably going to be a test scenario for Scarlett too, if it sells well then Scarlett will be discless, if not then Scarlett will launch with an optical drive.

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Bad idea. With games being larger and larger, sure downloading would seem sensible, however not everyone has great internet. It can take me days to download a new game. I always bought physical where I could on my consoles for this reason

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32 minutes ago, Arika S said:

Bad idea. With games being larger and larger, sure downloading would seem sensible, however not everyone has great internet. It can take me days to download a new game. I always bought physical where I could on my consoles for this reason

Unfortunately, people like us in Australia with poor internet connection are small fish compared to the large American and European market. 

 

I expect the next major Xbox revision to be completely discless and I think this is the way to prepare their market. It’s definitely the way the market is going.

 

It does mean it’s going to be harder to get a good deal on software though, less options mean a more monopolistic market for Microsoft.

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All those poor game shops that sell physical copy... one more nail in the coffin

Awareness is key. Never enough, even in the face of futility. Speak the truth as if you may never get to say it again. This world is full of ugly. Change it they say. The only way is to reveal the ugly. To change the truth you must first acknowledge it. Never pretend it isn't there. Never bend the knee.

 

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Did nobody notice the mention that there would also be a lower-cost Xbox One S-like model with an optical drive?

 

The disc-less model would no doubt amount to testing the waters, but Microsoft knows there are still plenty of people who need (or just prefer) physical game copies.  It'd be a transition, not a hard cutoff.

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20 minutes ago, Commodus said:

Did nobody notice the mention that there would also be a lower-cost Xbox One S-like model with an optical drive?

 

The disc-less model would no doubt amount to testing the waters, but Microsoft knows there are still plenty of people who need (or just prefer) physical game copies.  It'd be a transition, not a hard cutoff.

I believe the last go-around on this topic it came out a pretty significant chunk of Xboxs never touch the Internet. Which would cut up a huge chunk of the potential market for these.

 

Though I think everyone is clearly missing the trick. They'll sell the Disc Drive as an "optional" extra for 100USD. Just need a USB-C connector (or 2) so you can run data & power to it. This would allow Microsoft to run 3 main SKUs. No Disc. No Disc + Disc Drive Bundle. Built-in Disc Drive + Larger HDD. It should let them run out the disc-less console at between 349 and 399USD while the actual "console" runs around 550-600.

 

Frankly, it'd be a better business & technical move from the company. The extra industrial design costs would be pretty minimal for how much it can open up a range of the market.

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3 hours ago, ZacoAttaco said:

Unfortunately, people like us in Australia with poor internet connection are small fish compared to the large American and European market. 

True but that also assumes Americans don't have a massive internet connection problem. In fact a company planning on depending on them for their business should rethink their strategy until they can bribe persuade the administration to re-establish and enforce net neutrality.

Sorry but as big as giants like Microsoft and Google are, they got beat by the media companies and their control of bandwidth. An important lesson in the importance of strategic resources and not just large numbers on bank accounts.

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Well, now days discs kinda are just like physical DRM no. Like containing code, then you have to download day one patch that's larger than game itself and shit like that. 

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57 minutes ago, Taf the Ghost said:

Just need a USB-C connector (or 2) 

I can't see it needing two usbCs. 

 

Also, don't Microsoft have to pay Sony for the use of the Blu-ray format? Like for every drive(and maybe disc) they sell?

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It's that time of the cycle again when a year before launch they pull out their "slim" versions just to cash in on the holidays.

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so they're trying this again? hahaha... when will m$ learn... how does this benefit the consumer? here i thought i couldn't hate xbox any more than i already do... 

Bolivia.

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10 minutes ago, Ben Quigley said:

I can't see it needing two usbCs. 

 

Also, don't Microsoft have to pay Sony for the use of the Blu-ray format? Like for every drive(and maybe disc) they sell?

One for data and one for power. I think they can do it over a single USB Type-C, but I also don't know the power needs for a BluRay drive off the top of my head.

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1 minute ago, Taf the Ghost said:

One for data and one for power. I think they can do it over a single USB Type-C, but I also don't know the power needs for a BluRay drive off the top of my head.

Cant USB-C deliver 85watts of power.... no way it needs anything close to that...

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12 minutes ago, Ben Quigley said:

Cant USB-C deliver 85watts of power.... no way it needs anything close to that...

What the spec can do has to be compared to what they can do within the console's system itself to deliver the power.

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Just now, Taf the Ghost said:

What the spec can do has to be compared to what they can do within the console's system itself to deliver the power.

very true, but you would think if the system is designed around that aim it would be factored it.... 

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Just now, Ben Quigley said:

very true, but you would think if the system is designed around that aim it would be factored it.... 

I agree. I would probably expect just 1 Type-C to handle it, but it's not impossible there'd be some technical reason they'd deploy two. Or they might use 2x Type-A for compatibility reasons across their entire ecosystem. 

 

Still, the stand-alone unit makes a lot of business & technical sense.

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Is it that hard to let people just connect external optical drives for there disc libraries?

I once did the unthinkable, back many headphones ago...

I split an audio split, again

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I don't like the idea. I am always a fan of physical copies of games. That said, most games have a day 1 "patch" of the size of the game or even larger than what is on the game disk or cartridge (in the case of the Switch). And, it is just as bad on PC. More and more PC games on disk just have Steam or Origin or what-not, on it, and a code to get the game online once you install the client to download it from there.

 

Soooo... does it really matter in the end to have a disk drive? I mean, I ask, when was the last time you used your disk drive on your PC to install/play a game? Even if you did, I am sure you count in one hand the number of times you used it during the year for most if not, all, of you.

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2 hours ago, huilun02 said:

All those poor game shops that sell physical copy... one more nail in the coffin

blockbuster should return

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6 minutes ago, GoodBytes said:

I don't like the idea. I am always a fan of physical copies of games. That said, most games have a day 1 "patch" of the size of the game or even larger than what is on the game disk or cartridge (in the case of the Switch). And, it is just as bad on PC. More and more PC games on disk just have Steam or Origin or what-not, on it, and a code to get the game online once you install the client to download it from there.

 

Soooo... does it really matter in the end to have a disk drive? I mean, I ask, when was the last time you used your disk drive on your PC to install/play a game? Even if you did, I am sure you count in one hand the number of times you used it during the year for most if not, all, of you.

I bought DOOM on PC that came with a disc. The problem was that it was only 15 out of the 60 or so GB. And now it’s completely useless because the Denuvo removal patch is just as big as the game itself anyway

 

But even if there isn’t a massive day-one patch, the game on disc is still outdated and you’ll probably spend all day for all the patches to catch up

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1. you only do updates if you care to, the game is still playable (in mosts cases anyway)

2. this is a discless version, i assume there will still be disc versions

3. it makes for another option and lower costs

4. stop complaining about everything ?

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For the PC crowd that has Steam and Origin, what is a disc drive?  I haven't had an optical drive in my PC for almost 6 years now.

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RIP GameStop lmao

 

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