As Nintendo officially admits development of its next-generation home console, more unofficial details transpire. Apparently, the console due late in 2012 carries code-name "Cafe" and will be based on IBM Power microprocessor, ATI DirectX 11-class graphics engine as well as a new motion-sensing controller with built-in screen.
The next-generation console from Nintendo is internally called "Cafe" and architecturally resembles Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox 360, but sports higher amount of compute power, reports 01.net web-site. In fact, the Cafe reportedly resembles Xbox 360 even "anatomically": it is based on custom triple-core IBM Power microprocessor and features ATI R700-like (Evergreen) custom graphics engine. The system will have 512MB or higher amount of memory.
The specifications are likely to be very preliminary and exact levels of performance are unknown. Still, DirectX 11-like graphics capabilities seem to be up-to-date, but in 2012 will rather be outdated. Nonetheless, specifically tailored games running on a triple-core processors and with DirectX 11-class graphics at even 720p resolutions should look significantly better than present. It is expected that Nintendo will show off the console at the E3 trade-show in June, 2011, and will therefore unveil at least basic technical specs.
The choice of architecture is rather logical as Nintendo will need to ensure that its new console will not only be able to play popular high-definition cross-platform games that are already available, but will also be quickly adopted by game-developers currently designing games due in 2012 and later.
The console will also feature a rather innovative game controller, which will feature a large touch-screen as well as traditional gamepad controls. Since the information seems to come from two sources (01.net, Neogaf), it looks like Nintendo is at least considering such a hybrid controller. Given the fact that Nintendo has vast experience in with dual-screen games and game consoles (DS, 3DS, etc.), the company may be interested in creation of such controller for its home consoles too.
Nintendo did not comment on the news-story.