Report: Next Xbox won’t have disc drive

According to the latest rumor, the Xbox 720 will not have a spinning disc drive.

Instead, the console will focus highly on digitally downloaded content. That doesn’t mean games won’t have a retail presence. There will still be a slot for retail games, but it will reportedly be powered by some sort of solid state media.

These are the details that an unnamed source told MCV. The source was quoted as saying the information was under “the stricted NDA” he has ever seen.

He didn’t elaborate on what kind of solid state storage will be used; it could either be a universal standard like SD, or something that’s completely proprietary akin to the Playstation Vita game cards.

In addition, the source was quoted as saying the new Xbox will be released in 2013. That would give credence to prior reports that the system will actually be unveiled at E3 in June of this year. Consoles are typically unveiled about a year to a year-and-a-half before they’re released.

After running its report, MCV received an e-mail from Microsoft, stating, “Xbox 360 has found new ways to extend its lifecycle like introducing the world to controller-free experiences with Kinect and re-inventing the console with a new dashboard and new entertainment content partnerships. We are always thinking about what is next for our platform and how to continue to defy the lifecycle convention. Beyond that we do not comment on rumors or speculation.”

The elimination of physical disc media for a platform as huge as the Xbox would be an enormous symbol of how digital content is the future, and anything you have to go to the store to buy is becoming a relic.