Microsoft Downplays Rumors Of Streaming-Only Xbox Project Scarlett Gaming Console

Xbox One
Do not hold your breath waiting for a version of Project Scarlett built exclusively for streaming. Xbox boss Phil Spencer threw cold water on what was becoming a hot rumor, fueled in large part by comments he previously made regarding the company's future console plans. As it stands, Project Scarlett will stick to the usual script.

The speculation stems in part from Project xCloud, a streaming service Microsoft is working on that will allow users to play games on any device. This is not meant to replace power consoles like Project Scarlett, the codename of Microsoft's next flagship Xbox console, but rumors of a dedicated streaming SKU launching alongside the main console have persisted nonetheless.

In an interview with GameSpot, Spencer sought to put the rumors to rest.

"Last year we talked about xCloud and then we said we were working on new game consoles, but that's all I said." Spencer said. "We didn't say that [a streaming console was in the works]. I think maybe some people thought that that was the disc-less one that we just shipped. We are not working on a streaming-only console right now. We are looking at the phone in your pocket as the destination for you to stream, and the console that we have allows you to play the games locally."

The disc-less console he refers to is the recently launched Xbox One S All-Digital Edition, which costs $50 less than a regular Xbox One S. As of right now, it does not appear as though there are any plans to offer a similar variant of Project Scarlett.

Spencer had previously said Project Scarlett will be one "cool looking" console. We also know it will incorporate custom silicon from AMD based on its Zen 2 CPU and Navi GPU architectures, with ray tracing support. Furthermore, Spencer recently said hitting high frame rates is a point of focus.

""I think the area that we really want to focus on next generation is frame rate and playability of the games," Spencer said. "Ensuring that the games load incredibly fast, ensuring that the game is running at the highest frame rate possible."

Exactly how high remains to be seen, though Spencer did point to 60 frames per second at 4K. Hitting 60fps is not crazy high, obviously, but bear in mind that 4K amounts to around four times more pixels than 1080p.

Assuming Project Scarlett and Sony's PlayStation 5 launch during the holiday season next year, we still have more than a year to speculate.