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Meanwhile Xbox 360 continues to sell strong

Even as the storm over digital rights management (DRM) thunders on the horizon for Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) holiday season, the offline-playable Xbox 360 continues to sell strong.

I. Xbox 360 Stays Strong

In May the Xbox 360 marked its 29th month atop U.S. sales charts, moving 114,000 units.  That's down from 160,000 units in May 2012, but then again the console market as a whole ticked downward.  Microsoft's numbers come courtesy of third party sales tracking firm NPD Group Inc.  Overall game revenue was down 25 percent for the month.
In total Microsoft pocketed $149.8M USD in Xbox revenue (from software, accessories, and console sales).

Microsoft is hoping that a redesigned case, showed off at this years Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) will help it continue its dominance.  The new case resembles the upcoming Xbox One, with a slimmer profile and quieter internals.  The redesign is similar to rival Sony Corp.'s (TYO:6758) penchant for "slim" console refreshes.

Microsoft Xbox 360 refresh
Microsoft's Xbox 360 refresh

Prices for the redesigned 'box remain unchanged at $199.99 for the 4GB version, $299.99 for a 250GB version, and $299.99 for a 4GB version with a bundled Kinect sensor.  Microsoft has announced that it hopes to sell another 25 million Xbox 360s, offering the system as a cheaper alternative to next generation consoles.  That would bring lifetime sales to 100 million units globally.

II. Microsoft: Xbox is 10x... no, 3x... no, 8x... no, 10x... no, 40x More Powerful!

Meanwhile yet another controversy is brewing over the Xbox One -- but this time it isn't about DRM.  Rather it's about the processing power of the Xbox One.

In raw performance of the in-console hardware, Sony's PlayStation 4 will reportedly trump the Xbox One's internals with a slightly more powerful CPU/GPU combo.  But Microsoft's controversial "always on" DRM scheme does offer some degree of parity, allowing Microsoft to bump some amount of processing off the console.

Regardless, Microsoft appears intent on comparing its console against a known -- the Xbox 360.  And it's there that the confusion begins.
Xbox One
The Xbox One

In an interview with Stevivor on May 22 Microsoft Xbox Australia spokesperson Adam Pollington remarked, "It’s also been stated that the Xbox One is ten times more powerful than the Xbox 360, so we’re effectively 40 times greater than the Xbox 360 in terms of processing capabilities [using the cloud]." (emphasis added)

Microsoft Game Studio chief Phil Spencer on Monday's episode of "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" bragged that the Xbox 360 was 3x more powerful:

Later, at roughly 4 a.m. EST he took to Twitter to correct himself at least twice as he first said 8x, then 10x (without the cloud):

Even if that number is correct there's still some big questions about Microsoft's numbers.  Mr. Pollington's comments seem to suggest that the Xbox One will quadruple its onboard processing power via the cloud.  That's a rather ambitious claim -- and one which will need to be seen to be believed.

If it can indeed up its console's performance by 300 percent with cloud computing, then perhaps it has some ammo against critics of its always-on DRM scheme.  If not, the critics will score yet another strike against the embattled gaming box.

Sources: Microsoft [1], [2; Twitter]

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RE: Xbox???
By 2bdetermine on 6/19/2013 3:53:56 AM , Rating: 2
My last console that I owned was Dreamcast. I couldn't careless for PS4. Consoles once it releases you stuck with same old hardware for years to come and developers getting lazy milking same old engines and take PC alone for a ride.

RE: Xbox???
By BRB29 on 6/19/2013 12:18:03 PM , Rating: 2
IMO, those same old engines produced some amazing graphics for what the hardware is. Supposedly my integrated gpu is as powerful as the xbox360 but the gaming is vastly different on them. Learn more about code optimizations on fixed platforms my friend.

RE: Xbox???
By 2bdetermine on 6/19/2013 3:08:13 PM , Rating: 2
Like I said they stuck with same old limited hardware and start milking/code optimizing whatever you wanted to call it. While PC moving on.

RE: Xbox???
By BRB29 on 6/19/2013 6:50:39 PM , Rating: 2
and PCs will cost you thousands in 5 years while a console cost you whatever initial cost you put into it. What is your point? you get what you paid for.

RE: Xbox???
By 2bdetermine on 6/19/2013 9:19:27 PM , Rating: 2
As PC moving on with new R&D pushing new boundary. While the consoles market the only R&D going on is the consumers wallet.

I don't even remember the last time that I paid $60 for a game. That doesn't mean I don't embrace new progress. You can't explore distant star with a space shuttle.

Here is how I see the consoles market a way for greed corporations making as much money as possible with the same all crap iteration releases (eg. MW series).

"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki

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