Microsoft envisions what the Xbox would be like in 2042
Science fiction has always tried to take a stab at what the future could hold in store for us. Some of its predictions, such as superfast computing devices, have manifested themselves into reality. Others, like flying cars, not so much. Xbox has some grand visions for 2042, which it has detailed in a new YouTube video.
The 96-second video starts by stating that gaming on an Xbox from 2042 would be indistinguishable from reality. It would leverage quantum technology, which would allow it to hit speeds of 1 quintillion floating-point operations per second (FLOPS). That is several orders of magnitude higher than current-generation consoles and even top-tier gaming PCs. To put things in perspective, the Xbox 360 launched in 2005 maxed out at 0.240 TFLOPS. Fifteen years later, the top-of-the-line Xbox Series X improved that to 12TFLOPS. The jump from here to QFLOPS territory is quite significant, especially for consumer devices.
Microsoft also imagines that in 2042, 32K, 480 FPS gaming will have become the norm. A screen resolution of 32K doesn't seem that far fetched, given the progress we've made in the past decade alone. The video shows the Xbox 2042 running a holographic UI that directly interfaces with 'smart optical appliances' and 'neural interfaces.' While that does sound good on paper, the prospect of gaming consoles interacting with chips embedded directly into your body comes off as a tad dystopian.
Prima facie, it might seem like Microsoft is just very optimistic about the state of technology in 2042, especially with the 1 QFLOPS estimate. Then again, there's no telling what might happen in the next decade. We've nearly hit the limit when it comes to transistor sizes, so traditional silicon-based semiconductors could very well be a thing of the past in 2042. One can only hope that the 2042 Xbox doesn't involve drinking verification cans as a form of authentication.