07/05/2013 06:04 BST | Updated 06/07/2013 06:12 BST

Microsoft Memo: 'Next Xbox Will Not Be Online-Only'

An XBox 360 controller.
An XBox 360 controller.

Microsoft has apparently confirmed that the next Xbox will not require an always-on internet connection, despite months of anguished rumours to the contrary.

An internal memo leaked by Ars Technica purports to put the long-running issue finally to rest.

The document claims that the console will not be "always on", while referring to it by its development name 'Durango'.

Microsoft is set to unveil the new machine at an event on 21 May, ahead of further announcements at the E3 gaming conference in LA in June.

The memo said:

"There are a number of scenarios that our users expect to work without an Internet connection, and those should 'just work' regardless of their current connection status. Those include, but are not limited to: playing a Blu-ray disc, watching live TV, and yes playing a single player game."

Within that memo it also appears to be confirmed that the Xbox will work as a live TV box and come with a Blu-Ray player.

Ars Technica suspects that gamers will still have to be online to install games, but will not have to be connected to play single player titles.

But there are also questions about how - and why - the memo was leaked at all, with at least one tech site labelling the appearance of the text 'suspiciously informative'.