Rumor: Microsoft working on gaming tablet called Xbox Surface

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Over the course of the past few years, gaming on touchscreen devices, namely smartphones and tablets, has become  enormously popular. In lieu of the steadily dropping sales in the “core” console gaming industry, tablet and smartphone gameplay has been erupting. And why shouldn’t it? After the initial expense of purchasing the device, it’s rather uncommon to encounter a game that’s more than a couple of dollars. Now, Microsoft appears to be getting in on the action.

This rumor goes much like any other, where “sources” that claim to be inside the company confirm certain plans, this time to The Verge. This follows the leak of specs for a tablet in June that advertised an ARM-based processor with 288MB of RLDRAM 2 and 1280x720resolution, but it’s only now that the lines have been connected to refer to this actual device as a gaming tablet. According to those sources, the tablet, dubbed Xbox Surface, will not be following any specific hardware architecture and will run a custom Windows kernel (similar to a Windows phone) with a primary focus on gaming. So that means you probably won’t be able to do much besides play games.

Microsoft seems determined to keep this thing secret, as well. Traditionally, gaming companies will hand over specs to a separate company which then works on building the physical console. This is not so with Xbox Surface, which is being manufactured independently. Additionally, Microsoft has locked down most of its headquarters in which research and testing is allegedly being conducted on the device. It is curious what is so important about this tablet that Microsoft is so hell-bent on keeping it hidden.

As always, Microsoft refused to comment.

Any ideas on what may be so life-changing about Xbox Surface? Tell us in the comments or discuss Surface in our forums!

Chris has been writing about the industry in some capacity for over 5 years, and loves doing it. When he's not enjoying the latest novelty indie game, he can be found watching movies or telling lame jokes. PSN: SheriffSheridan, Steam: cmichaelsheridan