There are reports that have surfaced through the Wall Street Journal which are indicating that Microsoft is in the development phase of a new set-top box which will essentially function as a media streaming device. Essentially, this latest rumour builds on previous rumours which suggest that through this set-top box, users will be able to log into Xbox Live using their ID and password and from there, they can stream video.
If this sounds familiar, it should because Microsoft isn’t reinventing their wheel. Rather, they are taking the Xbox 360, removing the gaming components of it and releasing it as a cheaper set-top box whose sole purpose will be video streaming. Assuming that this rumour does come to fruition, it would mean that Microsoft would have a device that can compete with Apple TV, at least in terms of pricing as the new device is expected to have a price tag of $99. Rumours suggest that Microsoft has been testing out a variety of features and options with this device including the integration of motion controls which would come courtesy of Kinect. As it stands now, this is still just a rumour and there is no guarantee that Microsoft will in fact come out with such a device. We do know that the Redmond company will be launching a new Xbox 360 and if demand for this device are high, it could cause Microsoft to reassess their plans for a standalone set-top box.