My grandma used to say. "When you got nothing to say, say nothing". This was a perfect E3 to say nothing about consoles. Let Nintendo check the temperature to see if consumers thirst for change. I think MS and Sony are very wise to say nothing about Nexgen consoles right now. I would have been shocked if they did.
Anthony 1: MS is not as afraid of Nintendo as it is Sony and Apple. If any of those 2 players make a move, you will be shocked how fast NEXBox will hit the market. Remember the Emperor in Star Wars? Remember the "Fully Functional Deathstar" that the Jedi thought was a prototype. That is exactly the sucker punch MS is holding in reserve. Probably Sony too. Sony is just currently mired in too much loss to be proactive. They must mine profits on PS3. And they won't panic, IMO unless MS preempts them or Apple buys Nintendo after the new console launch.
XBox Nexgen is ready and could launch tomorrow if MS wanted too. It is already a 'Fully Funtional Deathstar! They have been working on it since 2006! Like I said earlier in this thread, A good friend of mind even began work on it during that timeframe when he worked for MS/XBox. That system is a cooked book! Period.
MS is only perfecting Nexgen based on emerging technologies or trends at this point.
But they will only change the XBox paradigm when the marketplace demands it or a huge, new competitive threat emerges. No such threat exists today. There is no opportunity that exists right now for them to prematurely obsolete XBox 360 in 2012-2013. There is only risk! The market is still clamoring for XBox 360, PS3 and a catch up HD version of Nintendo's console. Any Nintendo tech superiority will be washed out by marketing hype around XBox 360 & PS3 game launches. Nintendo better have a full plate of Zelda, Link, Mario, Donkey Kong and Kid Icarus ready to go to showcase their new tech.
So MS can just continue to tinker with the XB360 until Sony moves, Apple enters, Nintendo soars or an unknown emerges from the 'Darkness' with a breakout concept. And I don't see Nintendo soaring any higher than it already is. Their launch is designed more to stop platform erosion than innovate IMO. Third Party Developers are not going to even think about shifting away from MS and Sony because Nintendo has a brand new toy. They know that new toy will be used mostly by Nintendo to favor its own juice/games!
So IMO MS will just wait and update features and specs on the XB 360 until it maxx's out the current market. That is most likely a 2013 or early 2014 announcement and 2014-2016 launch. They will milk XB 360 profits as long as they can. This will allow them to continue building a superior XBox Live platform for Nexgen. It should be glaringly obvious by now that MS wants a big chunk of the Sat/Cable business. And they can get it with a superior Game/Home Entertainment console. If Sony panics and jump too early. MS will counter 1 week or 1 day later. If Sony gets complacent trying to recover all of its PS3 losses over too long a timeframe MS will jump them early and drive them deeper into risk. Apple is their real bogey. MS is waiting a while to see what they do. And Cisco technology is a looming presence with technologies like Telepresence.
The big unknown for MS is they don't know what a Maxxed out marketlooks like right now. Nor what consumer thirst it will create. Media convergence can go a lot of ways. They can only predict some of it. Consumers may want something totally different than what anyone has now. But they do not know this with any degree of certainty. If they just launch a bigger more muscular console than the XB360 and consumers want something else. They are Screwed & Tatooed! They will watch Nintendo on that one. And just muscle up the 360 as long as they can to fill that pipeline and pick away at Nintendo market share.
The XBox 360 and PS3 are fine consoles for the current "mature" market. The mature market is still growing. It's not even in early decline. And as said earlier, they can just improve 360 spec's/features to offset early market declines. All the whilst continuing to boost specs scope and features on the unseen but ready NEXBox in parallel development.
But don't think for one second that MS couldn't launch NexGen right now if they wanted too. Nexgen is ready now. And they are prototyping the successor to it as we speak. That's how companies like that plan markets and work the plan.