Rumor: Microsoft's next Xbox console will be released 2026

More rumors pointing to the next generation starting earlier than many might have thought.

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Xbox Series S/X seems to have peaked and is declining rapidly in sales while Microsoft is being vague about its future strategy, and even Sony recently said that "As we enter the second half of the console cycle, we expect the number of new PS5 units sold to gradually decline".

Basically, after three and a half years in this generation, we are now in the second half of the cycle. This leads us to suspect that both Microsoft and Sony are currently working feverishly on their next consoles, but there are many indications that they are taking a slightly different approach.

Because while countless rumors from good sources say that Sony is working on a PlayStation 5 Pro to be released late this year or early next, Microsoft in February instead talked about the next generation as they promised "the largest technical leap you will have ever seen in a hardware generation". But when will this start?

According to Microsoft's major leak from last year, both Microsoft and Sony were considering releasing new consoles in 2028. But the information wasn't entirely up to date, and since then Microsoft has bought Activision Blizzard and failed to boost Xbox Series S/X sales, with one at least reasonably reputable insider claiming to have heard that the next Xbox will arrive in 2026. And given that there doesn't seem to be a more powerful Xbox Series X coming, the chances of this actually being true are increasing.

And now the reliable Insider Gaming is joining the chorus, citing a Call of Duty data miner who claims to have received credible evidence that the next Xbox will be launched in 2026. And not only that, it will apparently be released together with that year's Call of Duty.

If true, one can suspect that extra resources have been spent on that particular game to make it a stand-out installation in the series, and releasing powerful hardware at the same time to offer the absolute best version of the title is of course a huge deal (there are many Call of Duty fans), and since it will be included with Game Pass, people don't even have to buy the game to play.

This is of course completely unverified information so take it with a much-needed dose of salt, but it doesn't seem like a completely unreasonable strategy, or what do you think?

Rumor: Microsoft's next Xbox console will be released 2026

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