Xbox reportedly working on a ‘fully native’ handheld to compete with the Switch and Steam Deck

xbox handheld fully native gaming reportedly in the works
Credit: Microsoft

xbox handheld fully native gaming reportedly in the works
Credit: Microsoft


  • Xbox is reportedly working on a fully native handheld system
  • Handheld prototypes have reportedly been worked on
  • Microsoft hasn't confirmed or denied the reports

Now that the Nintendo Switch and Steam Deck are huge successes, not to mention the PlayStation Portal, it seems Xbox wants a piece of that handheld pie. Reports claim that Microsoft is working on a new handheld that will support native gaming, not being reduced to cloud gaming or internet streaming.

The report comes from industry insider Jez Corden, who was speaking on the Xbox Two Podcast (transcribed by VG247). According to Corden, Microsoft already has “handheld prototypes” in the works and made sure to point out that these aren’t just for cloud gaming.

Microsoft hasn’t confirmed if this “fully native” Xbox handheld will become a reality, but it is a tantalizing thought, at the very least. Xbox does have an impressive library of games that aren’t readily available on other systems, mostly from the 360 era.

If Microsoft does make their own handheld, it would also mean that this device would give gamers access to Game Pass at the palm of their hand. While xCloud gaming does exist, nothing beats playing a natively downloaded game that doesn’t need internet. At the least, this sounds like a more interesting device than Sony’s PlayStation Portal, which has fairly limited uses.

Only time will tell if this Xbox handheld will actually come into fruition, as these prototypes could easily fade away from the company’s interest. Despite some struggles, the company is making decent sales with their current output, especially since Game Pass is such a good deal in the current gaming landscape.

Handheld gaming consoles have seen a rise in popularity lately, with the Nintendo Switch being proof of this. Despite being incredibly underpowered when compared to PlayStation and Xbox, the combination of handheld and console play led to it being a sales juggernaut. It’s easy to see why Valve decided to follow in the game’s footsteps, with the Steam Deck and Steam Deck OLED.

Will we ever see an Xbox handheld from Microsoft? That’s up to Microsoft, but it would definitely gain interest if true.

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