TECH NEWS – A lot of information about Xbox’s future plans has been leaked this week. One suggests the console market could follow in the footsteps of PC gaming…
Thanks to a recent FTC filing, Microsoft has revealed several possible plans for the future of Xbox. The studio appears to have plans for more than just Dishonored 3 and Oblivion Remaster. They could also be releasing an entirely new Series X version. Moreover, the release could signal the future of Xbox and the console market in general.
As the games industry goes digital, the future of physical media is in doubt. The film industry has been dealing with this for years because of the rise of streaming. Now, it seems that video games could follow suit. While gamers still have the option to buy discs, this next Xbox Series X could take that away.
As with PC games before, it seems that the fate of physical media is up in the air, and this release could be the final nail in the coffin.
Physical media could disappear from Xbox consoles too
There was a time when players could only access games via physical discs. But those days are long gone. Studios are moving towards a digital-only future. While there are still a lot of physical releases every month, gamers are increasingly opting for digital releases. It seems to be more efficient, more accessible and sometimes even cheaper than buying the actual discs.
The PC gaming community has already moved away from physical media for the most part. With the rise of Steam, gamers can easily browse, buy, download and play. The vast library of games is growing by the day. Competitors like Epic Game Store, Ubisoft Connect, Battle.net and EA App give gamers even more ways to play. Most of these titles no longer even get physical releases, making actual discs a thing of the past.
Because of this, many PCs and laptops no longer have disc trays, as they really won’t be needed in 2023.
While PC physical media seems to be dead, the console market is still holding on. But that seems to be changing with the latest generation. Xbox and PlayStation have both launched digital-only consoles for the first time, alongside disc tray consoles. However, unlike the two PS5s, the Xbox digital-only console was also inferior to the flagship Xbox Series X. This still led gamers to buy the disc tray console, which at least gave them the option of discs if they wanted them.
A new console, but only for digital gaming?!
Recently, FTC documents leaked that Xbox may soon be changing its approach drastically. So far, nothing has been officially confirmed. But the mid-generation update to Series X will reportedly do away with the disc tray. Meanwhile, it will also get more space and an all-new controller. This means that gamers looking for more performance will no longer need to buy a console with a disc tray. As a result, discs may go out of fashion. With the rise of Xbox Game Pass, it seems there really is no longer any reason to buy these games on disc.
This rumoured Xbox Series X update could mean that Xbox officially moves away from the concept altogether, which would now leave only Nintendo’s flagship brand with the use of physical media.
Removing this option will mean that players will flow to online stores. This is likely to wipe out a significant part of the physical market. Presumably, there will always be players who want to own discs. But they will soon be much harder to find.