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Next gen Xbox details emerge

The next generation Xbox will have more than a teraflop of processing power, be capable of high definition graphics and support multichannel positional audio.

Microsoft has trickled out some details about the next generation Xbox console, including the fact that it will have more than a teraflop of processing power, be capable of high definition graphics and support multichannel positional audio.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President and Chief XNA Architect J Allard outlined the details during a speech at the annual Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. Allard didn't disclose too much more hardware specs, saying more details would be unveiled at the upcoming Electronic Entertainment Expo in May.

Allard's speech focused on what he called the HD era of gaming, where consumers would demand personalised and always on-line high definition gaming. Allard said the HD era would feature high-definition graphics, where character movements are nearly indiscernible from real life; and multichannel, positional audio fidelity.

Allard also gave a sneak peek of the Xbox Guide, a new gateway that will be common across all next-gen Xbox games. The Guide will allow users to download new content, trade with other gamers and customise their own music playlists.

Features of the Guide include:

  • Gamer Cards: Gamer Cards provide gamers with a quick look at key Xbox Live information. They let players instantly connect with people who have similar skills, interests and lifestyles.
  • Marketplace: Browseable by game, by genre, and in a number of other ways, the Marketplace will provide a one-stop shop for consumers to acquire episodic content, new game levels, maps, weapons, vehicles, skins and new community-created content.
  • Micro-transactions: Breaking down barriers of small-ticket online commerce, micro-transactions will allow developers and the gaming community to charge as little as they like for content they create and publish on Marketplace.
  • Custom playlists: The guide instantly connects players to their music so they can listen to their own tracks while playing all their favorite next-generation Xbox games.

For more information on the next generation Xbox and other new consoles, click here.

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