Across the E3 press conferences we go, with a host of new games and developments already announced. But as the conference ended and Microsoft played a highlight reel of everything it had announced, I couldn't help but feel like the company missed its chance to get a head start on the next generation and plant the seeds to overtake Sony in 2020.
All these performance improvements will be supported by Microsoft's custom-designed 3rd Gen Ryzen CPU that's based on AMD's Zen 2 and Radeon RDNA architecture. It will use GDDR6 RAM and a solid state drive that itself can serve as a virtual RAM cache. It will be on sale towards the end of 2020, and forms one half of Microsoft's video game strategy - the other half being a cloud-powered service that lets you play Xbox games anywhere, on any screen.
No pricing plans for the new console were revealed at a gala event ahead of the opening of the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) video game industry gathering.
Xbox Game Pass for Xbox One proposes a Netflix-style service, packing over 100 standalone titles for a flat monthly fee. At the Project Scarlett reveal, Phil Spencer said: For us, the console is vital and central to our experience.
"Rumors before the show say the PS5 is more powerful than Project Scarlett, but we'll see", he said, so the information is far from being confirmed. It will also support 8K, although we have to imagine that will be more for future proofing against next-gen movie watching than gaming. We just haven't known what they'd look like, how powerful they'd be, or how xCloud and Project Scarlett might work together.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate - $14.99 / £10.99 / ₹999 per month, that combines Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Game Pass PC, and Xbox Game Pass Console Games. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate also richens the deal via exclusive bonuses, starting with Gears 5: Ultimate Edition and four-day early access in September 2019.
At its E3 keynote on Sunday, Microsoft officially launched Xbox Game Pass Ultimate to everyone, nearly two months after it was unveiled as a beta.
Microsoft also got a jump on Sony Corp., which skipped this year's show for the first time, presumably to make announcements about its own next generation console at a later date.