The new year is upon us, and 2020 is an extremely exciting time for Xbox. There will be new consoles, brand new “next gen” games, and much more.
Before the year closes, I want to make five predictions about anything Xbox related for next year. There’s a lot to think about, and I’m going to make these predictions based on what I think could actually happen.
1. The Xbox Series X will launch at 499 USD, and “Lockhart” will launch at 299 USD.
We don’t know much about these consoles yet, but I think the 2 SKU plan that Xbox is going for will try and attract numerous customers. If you care about power and having the best of the best, you’ll go with the Xbox Series X which I believe will cost 499 USD. If you care about price and are okay with having a less advanced console, the “Lockhart” version of Xbox will be there. Lockhart will also be a hot seller because I believe it will be about 299 USD which is a great price.
I think Microsoft wants to make sure that there are options for everyone. The Xbox One was a very limited device in terms of who it was built for, and they don’t want to make that mistake again. I believe they will show the 2 SKUs by E3 and market them for different segments of their potential consumer base. Xbox wants you in their ecosystem, and having options is a great way to attract customers
2. The Xbox Series X will take the power crown
There has been a lot of speculation surrounding which console, Xbox or PlayStation, will be the most powerful. There have been rumors from both sides, with recent rumors leaning towards Xbox. I personally believe Xbox will take the power crown because I think it’s something they desperately want to hold. They have been marketing their console as “the fastest, most powerful” and I think they are confident in that stance.
I also believe the 2 SKU model has tipped their hand a little bit. They will be able to have one console that is incredibly powerful, and pricey, and also sell a console that’s a little less powerful but at a good price. It’s obviously possible that the PS5 comes out and is the most powerful. But based on some anecdotal evidence and recent rumors, I think Xbox will likely be the most powerful console come 2020.
3. GamePass will be the crown jewel of Xbox
One of the main reasons everyone should own an Xbox right now is GamePass. You get hundreds of games for free, including every single first party game at launch as well as great third party games soon after launch. GamePass is an incredible value, and I think Microsoft understands that GamePass is what separates them from everyone else.
I think GamePass will get even bigger, and they will continue to add quality games to the service in 2020. I think it’s possible we see a few big third party games launch on the service, and we might see a few other surprises as well. GamePass will be front and center as a core pillar of the Xbox experience, and it will give the platform a distinct advantage next generation.
4. GamePass, Gold, and xCloud will be bundled for 15-20 USD.
Right now, you can pay 15 dollars a month for access to Xbox Live Gold and GamePass. It’s a really great deal, and when xCloud officially launches next year, I believe xCloud will be added to the bundle.
If you don’t know, xCloud is Microsoft’s streaming solution. It gives you the ability to play games over the internet from a phone or other device, and it’s had a lot of positive feedback during its early phases. I believe that xCloud will be added to the current “GamePass Ultimate” bundle which gives you Gold and GamePass for 15 dollars a month. There might be a small increase in price, but I don’t believe it will be too pricey. The value proposition on that is insane value, and it will be a deal too good to pass up.
5. We will finally start to see what Xbox Game Studios has been working on.
Microsoft has spent the past few years acquiring studios. That’s great, but we haven’t seen that many games from them. That will change in 2020. From Halo Infinite, to Gears Tactics, to Wasteland 3, the games will finally start to come out. I also believe we will see what studios like PlayGround Games, The Initiative, Obsidian, Rare, and others are up to. If you’re someone who asks “where are the games?” when thinking about Xbox, you won’t be asking that question much longer.
Xbox must be aware that one of the biggest reasons they struggled this generation was a lack of quality exclusives. They’ve done the work over the past few years to stock their portfolio with great studios, now those studios have to deliver on the games. 2020 should be the beginning of a tremendous decade for Xbox Game Studios.