Portable Xbox Possible in Late 2007

So speaketh the analysts

Posted by Staff
Famed Xboy mockup
Famed Xboy mockup
A gossip-fuelling analyst report issued in the US today pegs a portable Xbox as coming to market inside the next 18 months, music to the ears of industry watchers and those with a bent for arguing about videogames.

The paper published by The Diffusion Groups believes Microsoft not only can, but will release a portable games machine between late 2007 and sometime in early 2008. The report, grandiosely entitled 'On the Future of Portable Game Consoles: Analysis & Forecasts' reads:

Microsoft has been waiting on the sidelines until its gaming console and software business reached sustainability, all the while watching closely how Nintendo and consumers in general would respond to Sony's PSP. With global PGC revenues expected to reach $3 billion annually by 2008, and with only Sony and Nintendo active in the PGC space, Microsoft has before it an incredible opportunity. It has a critical brand presence in the console space, the breadth and depth of gaming titles, and the marketing clout necessary to enter this space and win decent market share.

While licensing the software is consistent with Microsoft's larger strategy, and no doubt Microsoft has endured many failures in regard to hardware plays, the success of the Xbox presents Microsoft with a unique opportunity. Microsoft owns an established and highly-regarded hardware brand, meaning that they can enter the PGC market from a position of strength, a privilege not enjoyed by any other player except those already active in the PGC space.


Of course, a portable Xbox being in the works at Redmond is a rumour, relatively well grounded, that has existed from the moment the original Xbox was announced. This report is far from concrete on the matter, offering input from exactly zero sources at Microsoft, though it does highlight the ease at which the software company could deploy a very effective Trojan into the portable gaming arena.

We'll keep you updated as we learn more.


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Comments

Chris C 31 May 2006 09:13
1/6
xbox may be a well known brand, but it's associated with a big clunky console: not exactly a good trait for a portable. Also one of xbox's strengths is Live, a portable can connect to the internet, but a lot of the time (flights, coach journeys) that's not an option. And finally xbox is THE consoles for first person shooters, a genre which developers struggle to do well on portables. So in summary I think these analysts have no idea.
OptimusP 31 May 2006 11:13
2/6
Reasons why this analysis is another piece of crap.
1) The handheld market is not growing to a global revenue of 3 billion dollars... it's allready over it. The Handheld markte is known(!) to represent a Quarter of the entire gaming industry (being at 25 billion worldwide it means the handheld market is worth 6.25 billion dollars...more then double then their estimate)
2) The Xbox division has grown sustainable? Seriously, what division is sustainable that is capable of blowing more then 12 billions dollars in 5 years and still has no prospect of making any profit at all! Why do you think Peter Moore is being so nice to Nintendo? He KNOWS that if Xbox doesn't make profit by 2007-2008 he's going to lose his job (caused by the entire Xbox division being shut down), Nintendo is just across the street where he works now, talk about handy.
3) Sony entered the Handheld market in a far stronger position then MS would now... look what it brought them, sure their hardware sells good (at a loss), their games don't. As a gaming handheld the PSP is a flop compared to the moneyprinting DS and it's losing the UMD-movie part also.
4) the fact that Rare, OWNED by MS, is making DS-games!(Diddy Kong Racing DS) Seriously... after 5 years Nintendo is still making money out of Rare (and probably the only company making money out of Rare)... talk about making a good bargain.
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way 31 May 2006 12:22
3/6
Late 2007! Buy PSP and Wee now, buy Xbox Ultra (Big) portable late 2007.

For some real Apple potable related gaming news, look at my thread in the general forums.

http://forums.spong.com/en/html/forum/viewThread.jsp?forum=1&thread=3418&cb=1149074453328


I think I will own the ultimate gaming solution by the end of 2006 (outside a Apple/PC Tablet) and it won't be A Sony, a Nintendo portable release, the Xbox portable, or the Apple. Guess what it will be (I reckon you wont this year)?
thane_jaw 31 May 2006 12:27
4/6

MS have already entered the portable market in the whole Windows Mobile Platform thingie. Cell phones games are easy profit, MS would do much better out of portable gaming by developing a mobile platform standard charging a nominal fee for development tools and porting their Live Arcade games to mobiles then developing a seperate handheld. A seperate handheld which would have to differentiate itself from the PSP and would have difficulties producing an experience you couldn't replicate elsewhere.
way 31 May 2006 13:26
5/6
I have at least one Pocket PC around here.

Unfortunately, I think the Xbox Handheld (fantasy) has delayed Pocket PC gaming machine for years (except for that Gizmodo, and the new gamepark machine that has Windows CE as an optional extra, did Spong know that). Would be cool if they could run Pocket PC/Win-CE games on that.

Compaq showed off a gaming sleeve for the IPAQ years ago, but it never came to market. I forget if there was others.

They would be far better off if they produced a Pocket PC gaming device, because those people know how to develop for the small screen, and the Pocket PC games look tends to be slick compared to normal games (yes, slick retro I know).

I mean, can't these guys get the simple fact, that if you put some tasteful buttons on the top of the PDA's face instantly makes capable of normal handheld gaming. Realistically, you could put buttons and second control PAD up there too, and write an API that allows for direct use, and a rerouting program that the user can use to produce config files that reroute other functions during games to the new button. Now the gaming developer can make patches or Config files available.

Instantly, you have thousands of games (even if the system is locked and games have to be re-released) before you even touch the Farcry/MDK like mega games. The processing power and the GPU's are available to do this. The machine could even be made to look like a business model, buttons extra control pad and all.

The truth of the matter, is there is enough room for 3 gaming models in their range, that share the same games. One for the people that will be using it as a mobile, another more powerful for those who are using it as a PDA, and the finale the Xbox PDA with ultimate gaming features and size. The markets are now complimentary rather then predatory, and MS gaming platform becomes a choice platform, as you can run the same games on whichever device and swap around depending on what you are doing.
tyrion 31 May 2006 14:33
6/6
OptimusP wrote:
3) Sony entered the Handheld market in a far stronger position then MS would now... look what it brought them, sure their hardware sells good (at a loss), their games don't. As a gaming handheld the PSP is a flop compared to the moneyprinting DS and it's losing the UMD-movie part also.

While that may be true elsewhere, in the UK at least, the DS has never outsold the PSP in weekly software units.

In fact, if you have the time, the PSP has outsold the DS in lifetime software sales by 160% - that's over the DS's 64 weeks and the PSP's 40 weeks on the market.

In the UK at least, the PSP is a roaring success, outselling the XBox 360 in weekly software sales in all but three weeks since the 360's launch.

The global market may be a bit more bleak - I don't have access to software sales figures for anywhere else, but in the UK, the PSP is doing quite well and is a very viable gaming platform.

None of which means that Microsoft will have an easy ride if they launch a hand-held, of course.
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