Honey, I shrunk the Xbox One! Microsoft may reveal two smaller devices at E3 2016

The Xbox TV dream comes back to life

Xbox One

Microsoft has multiple new Xbox devices in the pipeline, according to Kotaku and one other insider, but won't reveal the "Xbox Two" until next year.

Brad Sams, a Microsoft blogger with a track record of inside knowledge, claims several devices are in the works, two of which will be revealed at E3 2016.

According to Sams, one of the devices will be a Chromecast-sized streaming device aiming at a $100 price point, while the other will be a lunchbox-sized device that adds additional features and will be priced closer to $200.

Kotaku says it has also received word on a smaller, cheaper Xbox One coming this year, which it believes will include a 2TB hard drive.

This could be the second device mentioned by Sams, but he does suggest his is focused primarily on streaming and maybe on apps and lower-end games.

That means Kotaku's and Sams' reports differ somewhat. We do wonder if the second streaming device mentioned by Sams is actually the same "Xbox Mini" Kotaku is reporting on, but we'll have to wait and see. It's also possible we're just looking at three separate devices here.

Alongside those, a new standard controller may be announced soon, possibly also at E3 according so Sams, but won't be hugely different to the existing one.

4K and VR on the Xbox Two

As for the Xbox Two (or Xbox 1.5, as some of you are referring to it), Sams said he has heard that it may appear in Spring 2017. Kotaku also says it has heard of its existence from sources, claiming that the console is codenamed "Scorpio" and will have an improved GPU.

According to Sams, this console will also include 4K playback for video, but probably not for games.

More interestingly, Sams said that he's heard that there could be a virtual reality facet to it, which certainly makes sense with rival Sony launching its own PS4 virtual reality companion, PS VR, this year.

Microsoft already has a partnership with Oculus by bundling controllers with the Rift, and making an Xbox that works with the headset would make perfect sense. Kotaku also says it has heard Microsoft is actively seeking this partnership.

Finally, Sams said he believes Microsoft is toying with the idea with bringing the Xbox interface to PC. This would be part of a larger plan to make Xbox more of a "platform" than a console, tying in with Kotaku's report that Microsoft is moving towards a more iterative approach.

Entertainment, entertainment, entertainment

What's also interesting about this latest bunch of claims is that it hints at a living room entertainment offensive which Microsoft tried to pull off in 2013, with the launch of the Xbox One.

That plan was quickly put out to pasture after audiences made it clear that they wanted games - and Sony took advantage to shape the PS4 messaging around "the players" and win over a bigger audience.

Sony is expected to announce the PS4.5/PlayStation Neo soon, possibly at E3. We've had confirmation from our own sources that the console exists and will be pushing hard on virtual reality, suggesting it will be launch in time for the PS VR release this October.

If Sony launches a more powerful PS4 at E3, Microsoft might find itself on the back foot.

We've contacted Microsoft regarding this story and will update if we hear more.

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