Paul Thurrott claimed on Thursday that the console will be based on the 'Core' version of Windows 8 which, above all, will make it easier for developers to build games and software across Microsoft's various platform.
He also said the console will have a Blu-ray optical drive, as many have speculated, but unfortunately, he also claimed the device will indeed require a constant internet connection to play games.
Thurrott also talked down the prospect of a scaled-back Xbox Mini console or the launch of a dedicated entertainment device that would not play games.
He wrote: "Microsoft originally planned to offer both a “full” version of the next Xbox (with video game playing capabilities) and a lower-end entertainment-oriented version, code-named “Yuma,” that didn't provide gaming capabilities. But plans for Yuma are on hold, and no pure entertainment version of the next Xbox will appear in 2013 (or possibly ever)."
He did, however, claim Microsoft plans to launch a cheaper-then-ever Xbox 360 console code-named "Stingray" at some point this year in order to squeeze a little more life out of the near-8 year old device.
In terms of pricing for the new Xbox console, Microsoft will offer a $499 standalone version as well as a $299 version that would requires users to commit to Xbox LIVE for 24 months.
Thurrott also claimed the console will go on sale in mid-November in time for Christmas and a showdown with the Sony PS4 console.
Just yesterday it was confirmed Microsoft will launch the next-generation console at an event on May 21st on its Xbox campus in Redmond, Washington.
There had been suggestions that the company was planning a launch in April, but Thurrott said those plans were pushed back so Microsoft had more time to counter Sony's presentation.
The May 21st event will see Microsoft announce the console and its plans, but we may not get the full picture or learn the launch line up until the E3 expo the following month.
Via Windows IT Pro