While the video game industry appears to be ramping up to the next generation of consoles, this generation might still have a surprise or two in store for us. On Tuesday, Windows Central, citing its sources, reported that a disc-less Xbox One, codenamed Xbox Maverick, will be available to preorder in mid-April of this year, with a full launch planned for early May. The console will supposedly be called the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition.
Reports of an Xbox One without a disc drive have been floating around the internet for months, but this is the first we’re hearing about concrete release plans and a potential name for the product. Digital purchases have become far more common this generation than they were in the last, and with the advent of digital-only services like Xbox Game Pass and Project xCloud, a disc-less console is finally a viable option for gamers.
The report doesn’t include any pricing information, but without a disc drive, the All-Digital Edition should be the most affordable Xbox to date. Sources claim that Microsoft is considering revealing a Fortnite-edition console with a custom design in the near future as well, but it’s unclear if it will be disc-less or not.
Not everyone is ready to ditch physical media, especially when there’s still a risk that our digital game library will go up in smoke at some point in the future. But Microsoft has been talking about becoming platform-agnostic for years now, with rumors floating around that the Xbox Game Pass subscription service could even come to the Switch one day. So as long as Microsoft will give consumers the ability to carry their digital library and subscriptions over to new devices, the idea of owning a disc-less console suddenly makes a lot of sense.