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Xbox 720 won't need internet for single player, Blu-ray playback, live TV - report

"These should 'just work' regardless of their current connection status."

This just in: Microsoft's next Xbox is "engineered to be tolerant of today's Internet", according to what's alleged to be an internal memo, meaning it absolutely won't incite racial hatred against your broadband modem behind your back, or discriminate against your modem during job interviews in light of its customs or beliefs.

Now that the obligatory terrible introductory joke is out of the way, let's talk quotation marks. "Durango [the codename for the next Xbox] is designed to deliver the future of entertainment while engineered to be tolerant of today's Internet," reads the memo, which was apparently sent to all Microsoft employees (and thus, Ars Technica) in the recent past.

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"There are a number of scenarios that our users expect to work without an Internet connection, and those should 'just work' regardless of their current connection status," it continues. "Those include, but are not limited to: playing a Blu-ray disc, watching live TV, and yes playing a single player game."

The rumour about Xbox 720 requiring an internet connection is as old as the hills, and we've seen a number of exciting variations. Most recently, it's claimed that publishers will be able to decide whether to mandate a connection. One respected source has accused PlayStation fans of writing the hardware off based on "literally nothing", suggesting that the always-online implementation won't be as "Draconian" as rumoured.

Microsoft will reveal the new console on 21st May, a little over two weeks from now. The manufacturer is clearly alive to controversy over always-online hardware - Microsoft Studios creative director Adam Orth recently quit his post in mysterious circumstances following a fiery Twitter exchange on the subject.

Blu-ray has long been tipped to feature in the new Xbox, and talk of live TV is hardly surprising given Microsoft's eye-catching designs on the broader entertainment market. For more on the nuts and bolts, check out our Xbox 720 specs round-up.

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