Microsoft may give up AMD CPUs in the new Xbox

Ivo Meneghel Jr/ Canaltech

According to industry sources, Microsoft has not yet signed a contract with AMD to supply APUs for the next generation of Xbox. The company generally invests heavily in negotiations to get the best price, but specifically in the next generation Microsoft would be considering migrating to new Intel APUs, or even Nvidia.

On the other hand, Sony has already signed a partnership with AMD for both the PlayStation 6 and a supposed PS Vita 2, for an eventual return to the portable console market. Microsoft’s move would not be directly related to the expected performance of the RDNA4 APUs, but rather to the possibility of Intel offering really competitive prices, with good supply capacity in high volume.

More competition in the console market

Although Sony and Microsoft, the main manufacturers of desktop consoles, migrated to x86 architecture only in the last generation, the movement occurred more than 10 years ago, in 2013. Since then, AMD has been acting as the main supplier of APUs, mainly for the good performance and energy efficiency of its SoCs, which even on PCs almost always perform better in games than solutions with Intel iGPU.

However, with the arrival of the new Meteor Lake chips with Arc integrated graphics, the scenario seems to be changing in favor of the Blue Team. So far, we haven’t had the opportunity to see legitimate gaming platforms with Intel’s new SoCs, but the first impressions based on the experience of what was shown at the AI ​​Everywhere event in December were quite positive.

According to Intel’s launch schedule, the first gaming product with Meteor Lake APUs should be the MSI Claw portable consoles, as gaming notebooks in the segment only arrive in the last quarter of the year. However, the portable proposal should be more than enough to give us a real idea of ​​what the company’s new chips will be able to do on gaming platforms.

Furthermore, Intel is investing heavily in its own foundries to ensure a stable flow of chips for both its products and partnership contracts. AMD, on the other hand, depends on the flow of deliveries from TSMC, which has an extremely broad customer base and is almost all committed in terms of delivery contracts.

Apparently, Microsoft has already resumed negotiations with AMD for the next Xbox, but there is still no confirmation that the agreement has been signed. This would give Intel room to offer a truly competitive product with its APUs, which should already be from the Lunar Lake generation with Arc Battlemage graphics for a new Xbox with a suggested launch in 2028.

Therefore, it will not be surprising if from the next generation we have the two biggest players in the console market bringing internal components from opposite sides of the CPU market.

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