The tower of next-generation game console rumours continues to grow, as Kotaku today placed the latest piece on top of the pile: Microsoft's new Xbox will be an always-online system, with the ability to tolerate occasionally dropped connections.
According to a Kotaku source, no connection means no games or apps, but an interruption of three minutes or less will simply suspend the game while the console troubleshoots.
Microsoft declined to comment on the rumour, saying only that the company is "always thinking about what is next for our platform."
The report is in line with a late March leak from VGLeaks.com, which posted screen shots of the new Xbox's development kit, which also embraced the always-on, always-connected approach.
The console, expected to be unveiled at June's E3 gaming conference, will reportedly implement various power states to remain online, using only minimal electricity when not in use. Its always-on design is meant to allow for quick and easy connection and to cut down on time waiting for restarts or updates.
Code-named Durango, the next-gen machine is also believed to include an improved Kinect motion sensor, which will serve as a sort of power source for the console. Without the Kinect plugged in, the so-called Xbox 720 won't work.
Xbox rumours have been making the rounds for months, including reports in February that the next-gen console would be unveiled in April, two months before E3. Last month, Gaming Capacity tipped a machine without Blu-ray support, a move Microsoft made with the Xbox 360 console.
Meanwhile, Sony recently announced its PlayStation 4 console, which is expected to hit shelves by the holiday season. But we haven't actually seen the console, so many expect more details from Sony at E3, too. A source recently told PCMag, however, that the big PS4 reveal might happen shortly before E3 - perhaps to steal Microsoft's Xbox thunder.