Back in 2018, Microsoft was rumored to be working on two consoles for the next generation of Xbox devices. One of these was codenamed Xbox Lockhart and was reported to be an affordable device without a disc drive. However, when Xbox Scarlett was announced as Microsoft’s ninth-gen console contender, Lockhart seemed to have been scrapped.
We already know Xbox Scarlett will be Microsoft’s flagship gaming system and embrace bleeding edge technology. According to a report from Kotaku, Microsoft has not given up on its digital-focused Xbox Lockhart console.
The reports suggest the project is still alive internally within Microsoft. Furthermore, the remit of the console has not changed; that is to provide a more affordable alternative to Scarlett. Xbox Lockhart will likely be less powerful and will be reliant on digital content.
In terms of comparisons, we can view Lockhart as next generations Xbox One S and Scarlett as the Xbox One X replacement.
Speaking of Xbox Scarlett, Kotaku says Microsoft wants developers to achieve 4K at 60 frames per second. As for Lockhart, it will be offering 1440p at 60 frames per second. Comparisons to the PS4 in terms of performance may be apt, but Lockhart will reportedly have a faster CPU and better SSD storage.
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Lockhart is its all-digital nature. Of course, Microsoft already offers the Xbox One All-Digital Edition, but Lockhart could be a gateway for users into Project xCloud.
Currently in preview, Project xCloud is Microsoft’s game streaming service. It will roll out significantly in 2020 and would be a perfect fit for a console that is dedicated to digital content.