As rumors float around of Microsoft and Sony’s next-generation consoles, I’ve been hearing a lot of throwing around of the phrase “Xbox 720.” There’s nothing I can do to completely wipe this abominiation of a title from the vocabulary of the internet (just Google it and see how many results come up even from press sites), but if I can get even five people to stop saying it, I’ll be happy.
Here’s the tricky part, people: The Xbox consoles are not named in a numerical sequence like Playstation consoles. Nor are they following in the late 70s and early 80s marketing footsteps of the Atari 2600 and 5200. The Xbox 360’s name was partially inspired by the console’s emphasis on Xbox Live as a major feature. Xbox Live connects you 360 degrees around the world. The other reason often cited by Microsoft as an inspiration for the Xbox 360 name is that it puts you at the center of a multimedia entertainment experience. Microsoft specifically avoided a numerical sequence due to the fact that “Xbox 2” would have sounded old and uninteresting alongside the Playstation 3.
It’s pretty safe to assume Sony’s next console carry the moniker “Playstation 4,” but as of yet, the name of Microsoft’s next console is a complete mystery other than the fact that it will almost definitely contain the word “Xbox.” With rumors of an E3 announcement circulating,  perhaps we’ll find out soon enough.