Not to be outdone by Sony, Microsoft reportedly plans to launch its own standalone event in April to semi-reveal the next Xbox console.
Like its console competitor, the Redmond company will likely not show the actual hardware to generate some pre-E3 2013 buzz. Sony claims the PlayStation 4 hardware simply wasn't ready to be shown this week, but we're betting that's a load of crap. The company, like Microsoft, undoubtedly plans to reveal its true arsenal this June so that the show doesn't repeat the lackluster E3 2012 event.
News of Microsoft's possible pre-E3 2013 reveal stems from several sources. For starters, Microsoft partner Ustechs, which has previously worked with the company on media briefings including E3 2012's press conference, has registered the domain XboxEvent.com. That could be anything really, but given Sony's partial PlayStation 4 reveal, it's a sign that Microsoft is feeling the heat.
According to one unnamed "Sony official" who asked not to be named (of course), he was reportedly informed that Sony's New York showcase had at first caught Microsoft off guard. That seems unlikely given that the entire industry knew the console would be revealed, but the contact went on to speculate that "we definitely ruffled some feathers." Sure thing, buddy.
Still, it's quite possible Ballmer and Co. are quite anxious. Microsoft has been so hell-bent on nuking Apple and Google with the release of Windows 8 and related devices that Sony may have slipped under the radar. Unlike Microsoft, Sony isn't pushing an entirely new platform that spans across four screens. For that matter, Microsoft might not even care about the PlayStation 4 at this point, placing its bets on the Window 8 four-screen experience as a preferred platform for gamers.
But given Microsoft's investment in the E3 convention, the company definitely doesn't want Sony to steal the pre-show buzz. CVG reports that there are a "growing number" of developers and other industry professionals – including Sony employees-- who claim that Microsoft will now showcase the new Xbox console in early April after the conclusion of this year's Game Developer's Conference.
That said, there may even be something revealed next month, but who knows at this point. But as for the April reveal, we expect to see some game footage, a controller, lots of nonspecific tech talk, and perhaps some of the planned services and Windows 8 connectivity options. The actual console will probably come out of the closet in June in Microsoft's E3 2013 press conference because it, like the PlayStation 4, will generate a load of E3 buzz.