Xbox 720 “Loop” not coming until 2013

Microsoft France has ruled out the release of a next generation Xbox console this year, meaning Nintendo’s Wii U console will be the first of the big three to get to market.

It was initially thought that along with Nintendo’s offering, both Microsoft and Sony would step up to the plate and get their hardware out within several months of one another. They certainly don’t want a repeat of the PS3 fiasco which saw it released almost a year after its competitors. However, now it looks like the Wii U will land first, with the other two consoles coming at least 6 months, perhaps more, later.

The announcement about the Xbox 720 delay came from Microsoft France’s marketing director Cedrick Delmas, who denied rumours that the successor to the 360 would be arriving this year. He didn’t however say whether the world would get its first look at the next-generation console at E3 this year or not.

“We’re in an industry that talks a lot, that likes telling stories,” Delmas told Lepoint (translated from Eurogamer). “I am not convinced that things will happen this year. The Xbox 360’s cycle is not over at all. The proof is that we haven’t price cut this year.

“Afterward, what will happen at E3, it’s still too early to say. What’s certain is that there will be nothing new in 2012. If we wanted to counter Nintendo, we would have to be in a position to release something immediately, and that is not at all the case.

“We’re not here to counter Nintendo and they’re not here to fight the other manufacturers. Nintendo has put itself in a different cycle, it’s going forward to its own rhythm, with success as we have seen with the Wii, and now it’s their turn to present their innovation.”

Microsoft’s 720 has featured a lot of speculation lately, with many claiming that the hardware within could produce up to 6 times as much power as its predecessor. This would make sense considering the leaps and bounds in CPU and GPU performance in the past 7 years. Adding an AMD 7000 series GPU – which speculation suggests has been done – would give the 720 unprecedented levels of graphical headroom.

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