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The Xbox 720 Files: Microsoft's master-plan for the next generation

CVG examines key details and breakthrough technologies found in the leaked 56-page document

Seven days ago, a supposedly "leaked" Xbox 720 roadmap surfaced on the online document archive Scribd. Soon after, links to that document began to circulate across social networking sites, before specialist media outlets picked up on the news, which in turn sparked national media coverage.

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Amid frenzied developments, the immediate question was whether the cache of information was genuine. Journalists from a wide variety of publications shared their views, and yet the detailed contents of the document was relatively unexamined. During the week the focus of attention turned to Microsoft's handling of the leak, after the Xbox firm summoned its lawyers to remove the pages on the grounds of copyright.

But in the intervening days, CVG has conversed with publishing executives, games studios and an expert in 3D technologies to examine every single detail in the document.

In doing so, CVG was told by one anonymous source that the 56-page file is genuine.

Over the next few pages, we present the key concepts and breakthrough technologies featured in the file. It is worth noting, however, that the document was written in 2010, and thus some of the details will have been revised, perhaps extensively.

Microsoft has also issued CVG with a statement on the matter. It reads in full as follows:

"We understand there is great interest and anticipation for what comes next for Xbox and we are lucky to have customers who are so passionate about the platform. Today, there has never been a better time to own an Xbox 360 console. We have found new ways to extend the console lifecycle by introducing controller-free experiences with Kinect and we've re-invented the console with a new dashboard and new entertainment content partnerships. We are continually thinking about the future of the platform and when we have something to share, we will."

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The Xbox 720 Files

Index

1. Veracity

  • Is the document genuine?
  • Is it accurate?
  • Who wrote it /approved it?
  • 'For Todd'

2. Microsoft's final bid to create the first definitive media hub

  • All-in-one
  • Background recording, multi-streaming

3. Kinect version two: Four players, two sensors

  • Stereo sensor imaging

4. Kinect Glasses - Microsoft's augmented reality breakthrough

  • Feasibility
  • Roadmap to Fortazela
  • Kinect Shades on the Go

5. Market-leading hardware specs

  • CPU/GPU Power and oddities
  • Additions

6. The Xbox 720 battle plan

NEXT: Veracity

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