Xbox 720’s "Durango" codename revealed

For years we’ve been referring to the successor to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 as the Xbox 720, but now there’s reportedly a name that people within Microsoft are actually using.

The name mystery is just one part of the puzzle as to what the next Microsoft console will be. Microsoft has faced criticism over the name of the Xbox 360 since it is not nearly as elegant as the PS3 or Wii.

According to Kotaku, the console’s codename is Durango, which is no indication whatsoever about what the final name will be, though there have been instances where a codename ended up being used due to favorable consumer reaction.

Despite this codename, many still expect the new device to be named the Xbox 720. But what’s in a name, really? The big deal is what the console will do, and there have been an increasing number of reports to answer that question.

Among the most interesting is the notion that the Xbox 720, or Durango, will use a revolutionary new touchscreen controller that has been described essentially as a tablet embedded into a normal game controller.

That would seem to mimic Nintendo’s strategy with the Wii U, where the controller has gotten more attention than the console hardware itself. The Wii U controller will be able to play games autonomously even without the TV on, while the Durango’s controller would likely be more of a secondary component to the Xbox hardware.

Also expected is that the Durango will have strong voice and motion controls like the Xbox 360 Kinect, and it will have a much stronger approach to 3D content. Some also predict it will allow players to play online games for free, and employ a premium service similar to Sony’s Playstation Plus.