Microsoft patent hints at scalable console

The idea of a console that could be upgrade over time isn't new, but Microsoft has filed a patent for that very concept. The company applied for the patent back in December 2010, which details a console that could "satisfy quality of service guarantees for multimedia applications such as game applications while allowing platform resources, hardware resources in particular, to scale up or down over time."

Microsoft details a console that would have its own core set of components and a base configuration that could be upgraded in the future. The patent filing also confirms some details from previous Xbox 720 leaks, such as multiple CPUs and GPUs. One CPU and GPU combo would be a low-power solution that would handle core system management, while the other combo would render games.

Interestingly, one patent image shows a console with a third CPU and GPU combo that would share loads with the first two in the system. The patent could relate to several different products, but the scalability of the console "over time" suggests that Microsoft may target partners or users to perform their own additional upgrades. It would be a strange break in tradition and make the console a little bit more like a PC, although it might not be too far-fetched considering rumors have indicated Microsoft may use AMD chips in the Xbox 720.

[via Eurogamer]