10 ways the Xbox 720 can win the next gen

Xbox 360 controller

We love you just the way you are

4. Streaming, streaming, streaming

Supposed leaked specs claim the console will be powered by an AMD system-on-chip. The architectural leap - though beneficial for game developers - means that backwards compatibility is unlikely.

And as the new rumours have pointed out, the console will need the Xbox Mini to be attached in order to offer retrospective play.

This is one solution, but we'd also like to be able to stream old games if and when backwards compatibility isn't an option.

Now, the PS4 isn't backwards compatible, but it will offer a streaming service of PlayStation 1, 2 and 3 games. We'd like to see the same thing implemented on the new Xbox and we can't see any reason why it wouldn't be able to.

An online marketplace with every Xbox and Xbox 360 game ever released, available for insteand download? Yeah, we could learn to like that.

5. No more unnecessary Live charges

Xbox Live has somehow lasted this long with Microsoft charging gamers to use the service (well, for a proper Gold membership at least). The PlayStation 3, on the other hand, has had online services free from day one.

This begins to feel very unfair when it means shelling out extra money to use services like Netflix that we're already paying for separately.

Sure, the premium stuff will still be there on the new console, but if Microsoft is going for the big media approach then non-gamers shouldn't be punished for wanting to access current service subscriptions through their console.

Oh, and ditch Microsoft Points while you're at it. They just don't make sense anymore.

6. Kinect evolved

This could be what makes or breaks the new Xbox. Right now, Kinect can be summed up in one word: limited. Yet there's little doubt that the new console will be baking the feature into its UI.

As such, we want a nice fluid interface that's functional but, more importantly, reliable. One thing we've heard is that the new Kinect will be able to detect up to six people at once.

It will also allegedly detect eye movement, pausing media when a user looks away. This feature appears on the Samsung Galaxy S4, so it's not out of the question that it might pop up on Microsoft's new console. However, while potentially useful, we're not yet sold on it.

Really, Kinect is going to be most useful for the non-gaming side of the new Xbox, and we're happy for it to be that way. After all, we're still fans of old-school controller play.


Fewer of the casual titles this time, please

7. By keeping an eye on privacy

This will be a biggy for a lot of people. With Google Glass and augmented reality on smartphones, concerns for privacy are becoming more and more prevalent.

"I don't really care if you have to always have an internet connection for it to work properly," says games journalist Adam Hartley. "So long as no one else knows what I'm playing or looking at in the privacy of my own lounge, I'm buying it."

We agree. The risk of the next Xbox sharing more data than we'd like is a big turn off. We want the option to control all our share settings from the start, with a guarantee that none of our data will be passed on unwittingly.

8. Taking some lessons from Nintendo

Say what you want about the Wii U's hardware, its social functionality is an undeniable leap forward.

The Miiverse enables gamers to see what others around the world are playing, post hints and tips to public messageboard, and generally just engage. We want this - and more of it - in the Xbox 720.

The foundations are already in place; the Xbox 360 has prided itself on its online community. But it would be good to see that opened out a little more.

Hugh Langley

Hugh Langley is the ex-News Editor of TechRadar. He had written for many magazines and websites including Business Insider, The Telegraph, IGN, Gizmodo, Entrepreneur Magazine, WIRED (UK), TrustedReviews, Business Insider Australia, Business Insider India, Business Insider Singapore, Wareable, The Ambient and more.

Hugh is now a correspondent at Business Insider covering Google and Alphabet, and has the unfortunate distinction of accidentally linking the TechRadar homepage to a rival publication.