Microsoft planning to introduce Xbox set-top box

According to The Verge Microsoft has plans to introduce a low-cost alternative to its Xbox console designed to provide access to core entertainment services.
The “Xbox TV” will deliver the popular Xbox Live streaming entertainment services currently available on the Xbox as well as some basic gaming.Microsoft has been developing a set-top box have been circulating for at least a year.

The set-top box is part of a two-SKU (stock keeping unit) strategy for Microsoft’s new Xbox hardware, which will be unveiled in 2013. The device will run on the core components of Windows 8 and support casual gaming titles rather than full Xbox games typically found on a dedicated console.

Microsoft will use a chipset to enable an “always on” device that boots quickly and resumes to provide near-instant access to TV and entertainment services.

Microsoft’s Xbox set-top box work is said to be part of a broader effort to ensure its core architecture for the next-generation Xbox is scalable enough to be put together to run on a number of devices.

Regarding rumors of the planned set-top box, Microsoft released the following statement:

“Xbox 360 has found new ways to extend the console lifecycle by introducing controller-free experiences with Kinect and re-inventing the console with a new dashboard and new entertainment content partnerships. We are always thinking about what is next for our platform and how to continue to defy the lifecycle convention.”

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