The cheaper Xbox has quietly been cancelled
In all the giddiness about the reveals around the Xbox 'Project Scarlett' and the PlayStation 5, one of the biggest and most unexpected rumours about Microsoft's big launch was almost completely forgotten.
It was broadly expected that the Xbox Two/Scarlett would be launched alongside a cheaper version with slightly inferior but still very, very good internal parts, and had been generally referred to as the 'Lockhart'.
However, according to Brad Sams of tech website Thurrott, who's been on the ball with Scarlett leaks and intel so far, "Microsoft’s current plan for its next-generation Xbox is to focus on Scarlett and all mentions of Lockhart, which was previously documented in several places, has now been scrubbed clean".
Sams also noted that while Microsoft's Phil Spencer had referred to work on "consoles" at last year's E3, and that multiple insiders had talked about work on two consoles, Spencer has recently swapped to referring to a singular console. But why?
"Developers were having a harder-than-expected time creating next-generation games that spanned across two systems with various specs," Sams said, adding that that meant Xbox would therefore be at a disadvantage in head-to-head comparisons of graphics and speed compared to the PS5.
On top of that, the "progress made on xCloud and its ability to bring high quality, low latency gaming to any device" made the fundamental reason to develop the Lockhart - a cheaper, entry-level way into Xbox - less necessary.
What else do we know? Well, not absolutely tons, in all honesty, though one analyst has suggested that both the Xbox and the PS5 could cost under US$500 apiece.