While Microsoft has yet to officially announce the console, it’s thought the company may open preorders for its new disc-less Xbox console, the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, as early as tomorrow, April 16th.
Rumours of a disc-less Xbox One first surfaced last November, when it was suggested this console would join Microsoft’s line of existing current-gen hardware rather than be a next-gen launch. Even then, it was expected to release as early as spring/Q2 2019, and as it would only be able to play digital games, it was reported it could cost as much as $100 less than the present system.
In order not to dissuade sales to those who are interested but already own physical Xbox One games, Microsoft is thought to be considering a “disc-to-digital” program that will permit players to trade in their physical games for a digital code instead.
Now the rumours – this time originating from German site WinFuture (via Engadget) – confirm prior reports that the digital game-only console will arrive on May 7th, complete with three of Microsoft’s biggest games already pre-loaded: Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3, and Sea of Thieves. It also shares new images of the Xbox One S All Digital console.
It also confirms the system will also come with a single wireless controller, a 1TB hard-drive, and reportedly retail for €230 (roughly £200 / $260).
It’s an interesting step given Microsoft recently announced its much-awaited game streaming service, Project xCloud and, of course, now offers its digital Xbox Game Pass service. The service, for which closed trials are starting now, uses Xbox console components embedded into Microsoft’s Azure cloud-computing centres to deliver console games to phones, tablets and beyond.
Of course, both Sony and Microsoft are developing next-generation systems, too. For the latter, the new console has been codenamed Scarlett and is expected to retail sometime in 2020, and some believe a new Xbox One S with disc drive will also be announced in 2019, and that too will retail for less than its current price point.