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Xbox hybrid portable console hinted at by Phil Spencer on Twitter


Nintendo Switch with Xbox logo

Is Xbox going portable? (Picture: Microsoft)

The boss of Xbox seems to have confirmed rumours that Microsoft is working on a Switch style handheld console.

As Xbox gears up to announce its future plans on Thursday, the expectation is it will finally confirm that at least some of its exclusive games are going multiformat.

There’s a strong chance, however, that this is only part of the story. With questions around whether Xbox is leaving hardware behind altogether, or planning to kickstart their next console early, it’s possible that we could get an indication of Microsoft’s other plans in the gaming space.

One ongoing rumour is the possibility of Switch-like hybrid device with a dock, with speculation pointing towards a possible launch in 2026. While nothing has been confirmed, Xbox boss Phil Spencer has suggested on Twitter he’s at the very least interested in the idea.

On Monday, The Verge reporter Tom Warren posted an image of the Xbox operating system working on a Steam Deck, with the caption, ‘This is what I want.’ A follow-up tweet was liked by Spencer, where Warren encouraged Microsoft to ‘step in’ to make it a reality.

While in isolation this might be passed up as a friendly back and forth, this is the second time Spencer has liked a post related to an Xbox handheld in recent weeks. Earlier this month, the Xbox exec liked a post on Windows Central Gaming with the headline: ‘An Xbox handheld isn’t just likely to happen. For Microsoft, it’s absolutely necessary.’

Judging by Spencer’s other likes on the platform, he doesn’t commonly respond to articles or rumours regarding the future of Xbox – suggesting that some kind of Xbox handheld, or an Xbox operating system for other handheld devices, might be on the cards.

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Do you think Xbox is working on a dedicated Xbox OS for handhelds? pic.twitter.com/sJKCyEMjJx

— Idle Sloth💙💛 (@IdleSloth84_) February 12, 2024

If true, it’s unlikely we’ll get an official reveal of any new Xbox console during Thursday’s presentation – especially as it’s in a low-key podcast format. But, as Xbox likes to do, they might dance around the possibility with some purposefully vague wording.

It’s relatively surprising that neither Sony or Microsoft has tried to copy the Switch before now, given how many PC-based versions of the idea there are, including Steam Deck – with the only thing close being the PlayStation Portable.

The Switch will have been around so long by 2026 that Microsoft risks missing the boat, especially if the Switch 2 is substantially different to its forebear, but the original rumour suggested there would also be a standard, under-the-TV, home console as well.

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Source:: Metro

      

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