Next Xbox to include tablet?

A report from consumer site Gamespot claims to have word that the new Xbox, which will be revealed at this year’s E3, will include some sort of portable tablet component.

Given Microsoft’s recent efforts at unification across its Windows, Mobile, and Xbox product lines, it seems clear that the 720 or whatever they end up calling it will be the ultimate personification of that strategy,” it says.

There are strong signs suggesting that, like with Nintendo’s Wii U, a tablet component figures heavily into the new design.”

It goes on to speculate that the new machine will include a tablet PC, base station, a controller and some form of Kinect.

If true, the move would represent a remarkable change of direction for the games industry and, perhaps more importantly, a form of validation for Nintendo’s daring Wii U design.

And of course, with Nintendo’s Wii U seemingly quite limited in scope thanks to the need to remain near the base station at all times, the opportunity is there for Microsoft to evolve the idea further.

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