Sandy Duncan, a former Microsoft executive, said in an interview that consoles will likely die in a decade. He believes consoles will be replaced by virtualization and the Internet:
“I think dedicated games devices i.e. consoles (and handhelds) will die [out] in the next 5 to 10 years. The business model is very risky and the costs associated with creating new hardware are incredibly high. There is a definite ‘convergence’ of other devices such as set top boxes. There’s hardly any technology difference between some hard disc video recorders and an Xbox 360 for example. In fact in 5 to 10 years I don’t think you’ll have any box at all under your TV, most of this stuff will be ‘virtualized’ as web services by your content provider,” said Sandy Duncan, chief executive of Yoyo games, who used to be regional vice president of Microsoft’s home and entertainment business unit in Europe five years ago, in an interview with Thatvideogameblog web-site.
In fact, many observers and analysts have been talking about online services as substitute for many currently used tools, in particular it was predicted that shortly it would be possible to edit office documents, watch movies, listen to music, play video games, share photos and perform many other things by only using the Web. While some predictions have turned out to be correct: we can listen to music with more or less decent quality and share photos without quality loss online, others are still dreams: it is impossible to stream high-definition movie via the Internet, whereas gamers have always complained about increased latency during online game play.
Read more at X-bit Labs.