At this point, we pretty much know the console cycle. After a number of years of having a console on the market, console developers announce a new console and everyone moves on to the next generation. This cycle got a bit messed up with the announcement of Sony's PS4 Pro and Microsoft's Scorpio.
These consoles promise more power than the original consoles but are releasing only three years after the PS4 and Xbox One released. The announcement of these two consoles made a big part of the gaming community worried that the console cycle would be forever altered to a new more powerful console every two years.
Luckily, that doesn't seem to be the case – at least as far as Microsoft head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, is concerned.
"I don’t have this desire to every two years have a new console on the shelf", Phil Spencer explained to Game Informer. "That’s not part of the console business model, and it doesn’t actually help us. The best customer I have is somebody who buys the original Xbox and just buys all the games. That’s the best customer for us in terms of the pure financials of it […] I’m not trying to turn consoles into the graphics card market."
Here's what Phil is planning after Scorpio releases:
"To be completely honest, I don’t know what the next console is past Scorpio. We’re thinking about it. We’re looking at consumer trends and what the right performance spec and price would be, and [asking ourselves], 'Can we hit something that has a meaningful performance characteristic that a gamer would care about?'"
When it comes to Scorpio, Phil doesn't want anyone to think the Xbox One will be a crutch. Game development for Scorpio will be similar to the Xbox One's and to how devs cater to different PC builds.
"I know from a pure console perspective I hear, “Hey, you’re going to drag Scorpio down by making devs continue to support the Xbox One.” But anyone that has played PC games knows that PCs have a minimum spec, a recommended spec and an unbounded spec. And I don’t think anybody says, “Wow, Battlefield at the top-end is somehow held back by its ability to support [low-end PCs].” Devs know how to build scalable games. They already do."
We won't really know the reality of what Scorpio or PS4 mean to the gaming world until they release, but hopefully neither will negatively affect anything.