Cowan & Company analyst Doug Creutz doesn't expect Xbox 720 to launch until next year and thinks reports it'll be a digital-only platform are wide of the mark.
"Although not yet confirmed by Microsoft, we believe the next generation Xbox console could launch in the fall of 2013," he said in a research note this morning.
"We believe a digital-only next-gen Xbox is unlikely given risks to both Microsoft's market share and the gaming ecosystem as a whole from any attempt to kill used games.
"However," Crutz added, "we do believe that Microsoft may be targeting a cheaper physical solution in an effort to get the initial price of the box down and speed up new console adoption, which would be bullish for software publishers."
MCV said earlier this month it had been informed by sources that Microsoft's next console will "offer compatibility with some sort of interchangeable solid-state card storage, although it is not known whether this will be proprietary or a more standard format such as SD".
Microsoft's most recent comment on Xbox 360's as-yet-unannounced successor is that "there will be no talk of new Xbox hardware at E3 or anytime soon".