Stephen Chapman over at ZDNet did some sleuthing today and found a "morsel" noted on software/gadget engineer Ben Peterson's portfolio page. It's a teaser for a brand-new Microsoft project having to do with the Xbox 360. And with a completion date of 2015, Chapman surmises that it's likely for the next-generation Xbox console.
Here's the latest project he's working on.
Microsoft Xbox: Confidential / Collaboration with Microsoft's IEB Design group investigating future user experiences and hardware for 2015. *Work samples only permissible in person.* (March 2011)
We can glean from the noted March 2011 date above that this is a completely new project just getting underway. As for the black devices we see, obviously he did not want to disclose more than a huge tease. The top half looks like a stand of some sort with something attached to the top if it while the bottom half looks like a zoomed-in section of a Kinect-shaped device, but that's merely guess work on my behalf, of course.
The press team at Microsoft didn't immediately respond to questions seeking confirmation of the rumor. But with a 2015 completion date, one can only hope that a new Xbox console will be available, considering the Xbox 360 will be 10 years old by then.