Highly anticipated: While Microsoft’s Project Scarlett Xbox console is still a year away, it appears to have reached a point of maturity as we approach the end of 2019. That’s sensible, given that developers will need plenty of time with near-final hardware to polish launch titles, and Microsoft will need to sort out supply chain aspects to meet Holiday 2020 demand.
Microsoft’s successor to the Xbox One, codenamed Project Scarlett, is officially out in the wild and apparently connecting to Xbox One consoles, as evidenced by a tweet from Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer.
And it’s started….this week I brought my Project Scarlett console home and it’s become my primary console, playing my games, connecting to the community and yes, using my Elite Series 2 controller, having a blast. Great work by the team, 2020 is going to be an incredible year.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) December 4, 2019
On the surface, the tweet doesn’t appear to offer much; however, there’s a bit we can infer from it. First, if Spencer has a working Project Scarlett console sitting in his living room “connecting to the community,” then we can assume Microsoft is making good on its pledge for backwards compatibility. It’s interesting to see that Project Scarlett is already connecting to the current Xbox One environment, rather than some walled off, private system.
Additionally, Spencer outs that he’s using the recent Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2 gamepad. This confirms Microsoft’s commitment to compatibility, as the company has previously promised all Xbox One accessories will migrate seamlessly to Project Scarlett.
There’s still plenty that could change between now and Scarlett’s Holiday 2020 release window. Microsoft made last minute revisions to the Xbox One’s hardware, boosting CPU and GPU core clocks before entering mass production with the consoles. More recently, Spencer said that VR would not be a focus for the next Xbox.