From xbox360.ign.com on Mar 17th:
Images appeared on Chinese tech forum A9VG last night showing what looks to be a trimmed down Xbox 360 motherboard. Is it real? Well, there are a number of factors to consider.
With the launch of Natal this fall, Microsoft has the perfect opportunity to re-launch the Xbox 360 brand with a all-new look to its console. The company also probably wants to get rid of the console’s dreaded “three red lights” error as it looks to penetrate the casual market. There has also been loose talk from Microsoft executives before about a “new Xbox 360” coming in 2010.
Microsoft, as usual, said it doesn’t comment on rumors or speculation. If there is a Xbox 360 Slim in the works, you can probably guess we’ll hear about it this summer, perhaps even at E3.
The pictures below indicate that both the CPU and GPU processors have been combined into one chip, allowing for less heat to be generated and, of course, a nice cost reduction for Microsoft.
Perhaps it’s just a coincidence, but Microsoft is also hiring for a Motherboard Design Engineer for the Xbox console, which is responsible for “aggressive cost reduction of the console throughout the life of the product”.
I have to admit, I was happy for PS3 owners when they finally got their “slim” version. And I, a self-loathing 360 owner, could actually get excited about this one. You see it in the article above: “less heat”. We can only hope that there might be a sturdier disc drive, and no more “Red Rings of Death” (although there will be – inadvertently – new issues) .
Not to mention, maybe we’ll get neat new toys to choose from. Maybe more USB ports? Choice of color? Maybe we’ll even get lucky and get some PS3-like features (not unlike the PS3 Move being “borrowed”) such as an upgradable hard drive slot. Although that’s doubtful as Microsoft just released the 250GB HD to the public; but there are plenty of other features from other units to be desired. If this does turn out to be true, then Microsoft’s poker face could either be: not so good (Microsoft executives have already mentioned a new 360, and it turns out to just be slimmer), or quite good (a whole slew of new features with a new look, that could possibly be marketed as a “Natal Bundle” in the holiday season to come). It could even be sprung at the upcoming E3. Now that would be a surprise and there would have been just enough of a leak to get people excited so that Microsoft could take E3 by storm, yet again, this year.
I’ll say it again, I don’t consider myself a “fan boy”; I try to stay neutral on every subject that comes my way. I just want to play games on my day off like everyone else. I’m just here to do some of the legwork for you. The whole point is, I’m just staring off in to space, day-dreaming as usual. But it’s fun to dream.
Until next time, this is Rabid Scotsman asking: “What Role Will You Play”?