A supposed Microsoft insider over at NeoGAF has been revealing all sorts of secret information on the company's Xbox One plans, including details of the India launch.
NeoGAF member ntkrnl, whose credentials have been verified by the website's administrators, has claimed the Xbox One will launch in India in October, although he does add that the information may not be up-to-date.
He also lists launch periods for various other countries, broken up into two phases, or as Microsoft infamously categorised them – Tier 2 and Tier 3:
- South Korea
- Hong Kong
- Czech Republic
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- United Arab Emirates
What seems strange here is that unlike the PlayStation business, for which India is aligned with Europe and the Middle East, Microsoft clubs India with South East Asia.
Alan Bowman, Microsoft's VP of sales and marketing in Asia, had said at E3 that the Xbox One would launch in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and India in 2014, clearly aligning India with the South East Asia region.
So it seems a bit strange to see India listed in October along with the Middle East, while South East Asian countries launch in April.
Then again, India does have unique requirements in terms of localised entertainment content and Kinect voice support, while South East Asian countries have more in common.
An October release might not be a bad idea from Microsoft's point of view, however, as it will hit the country just before Diwali. The big question though remains the price and how it compares to the PlayStation 4, which will have had a nine-month head start when the Xbox One launches.
Other revelations made by the Microsoft insider were game-related. He claims a new Forza Horizon will release this year, as will Remedy's Quantum Break and Insomniac's Sunset Overdrive.
He did say Crackdown 3 was in the works, but won't see the light of day till 2016.
Lastly, he revealed that a Halo 2 Anniversary Edition would launch for Xbox One in November, including a beta for Halo 5, which will release in 2015.
Finally, the insider said Microsoft is planning to launch a cheaper Xbox One SKU that would match the price of the PS4. However, that SKU will not include an optical disc drive, which would make it an absolute no-no for a country like India, with its poor broadband infrastructure.
None of the above has been confirmed by Microsoft officially, so take it with a pinch of salt. We're in touch with Microsoft India and we'll let you know the moment it announces Xbox One launch plans for India.
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