Everything You Need To Know About The Xbox One

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Today, Microsoft revealed their next console, dubbed the Xbox One. Their unveiling took the opposite approach to Sony’s, as they shied away from big video game reveals in favor of system specs, apps, the upgraded Kinect, new controller, and sports. Lots of sports.

Let’s get familiar with the Xbox One, after the break.

As you can see, the console is gorgeous.

They’ve finally replaced the loading tray — the cause of the third of five times I had to send my Xbox 360 in to get repaired — and the overall look is a sleek, shiny black. The controller has been tweaked a bit, too. The Xbox 360’s awful d-pad has been traded for the standard plus-style one, the analog sticks now have ridged edges, and the triggers feature something called “dynamic impulse,” which adds rumble to that specific area. Great for shooters, I suspect.

The Kinect has seen a significant upgrade as well, and when the Xbox One ships later this year — yes, this year — it’ll come bundled with each console. The peripheral brings with it a 1080p RGB camera that captures video at 30 FPS. It will allow for menu navigation, including voice commands and motion gestures. Apparently, the Kinect can monitor your heartbeat, which means when the console becomes self aware it’ll know when you’re lying about the location of John Connor.

Speaking of functionality, here’s a look at the system’s specs:

8 GB of RAM, a Blu-ray drive, USB 3.0, HDMI in and out, and on top of that the Xbox One will run three systems at once: the Xbox OS, Windows Kernel, and a combination of the two for multitasking. Xbox Live has been improved, with added cloud features and support and now the service will run on an impressive 300,000 servers. To put that in perspective, the Xbox 360 currently uses 3,000 servers. Also, that whole required Internet connection has been officially confirmed to be false. Phew.

Obviously, this is an extremely powerful system. During the event they used Kinect motion gestures to switch between multiple apps — like, say, a game and a movie — that were running simultaneously. It was insanely fast.

Microsoft was anxious to talk about the numerous apps and partnerships they have in the works, including an expanded partnership with ESPN that will give users the ability to access extra information while watching ESPN. This includes bringing up a side panel while the content is playing that will display things like fantasy league and player stats.

The Xbox One will be getting group Skype calling, so you can chat with your friends while you play a game or watch a movie. Microsoft’s plans to turn the Xbox into an all-in-one entertainment device have been public knowledge, and it looks like they’re taking this plan one (giant) step forward with their next console with its live TV functionality.

Using motion gestures or voice commands you can navigate TV shows, networks, pin them to your favorites, or search the “trending” tab to find the most popular content.

No word yet on whether Microsoft wants the Xbox One to replace your DVR or cable box or if it takes input from the device and slaps its snazzy Xbox goodness over it, but I’m sure they’ll divulge more details on that in the coming weeks.

Lastly, the video games. There were a few of those at the event. Look for our list of confirmed Xbox One titles very soon. Microsoft is saving most of the game-related reveals for E3. They did reveal new features that will allow users to record and save game footage, similar to the PS4. There will also be something called “dynamic achievements,” which give developers the ability to constantly add and update their game’s achievements.

As for the console’s price tag, your guess is as good as mine. That probably won’t be revealed until E3, or possibly later.

Have a question? Feel free to ever-so-gently toss Adam an email, or follow him on Twitter and Bloody Disgusting.

  • HorrorManiac666

    This might just be me but I don’t like the look of the console, it looks a little to boxy.

    • divisionbell

      Looks surprisingly like the original

      • Chazz

        Might wanna head over to google images and take another peek at the original xbox.

    • huntermc

      Yeah, the design is quite boring. Luckily, that will not have any effect on the games.

  • Chazz

    Considering the much broader market they’re going for with all the TV features etc it makes sense to design it so that it blends in with people’s existing home theatre setups. Be interesting to see if Sony do the same.

  • Ravinus

    I like it. I want one. Instead of the red ring of death, you will hear, “I’ve just picked up a fault in the AE35 unit. It’s going to go 100% failure in 72 hours.”

  • Golic

    now that I’ve seen both, I’m going with the PS4.

    • atheistatic

      Oh you’ve seen the PS4?

      • Sirengx

        From what we have seen of it, it’s infinitely better than the xBox has shown us.

        • Chazz

          You mean it’s shinier with more plastic bits?

      • Golic

        I wasn’t talking about the plastic shell they come in, I was talking about performance; who buys a console based on what it looks like?

        • Chazz

          The only confirmed difference between the two consoles is that the PS4 is using GDDR5 memory and the the Xbox One is using GDDR3 memory, which as I said in another comment is most likely going to be a non-issue as GDDR5 is a current gen PC aspect and consoles are at least 1 if not 2-3 generations behind the PC market.

          Beyond that, based on the Xbox being a MS system and PS4 being Sony, performance will most likely be in favour of the Xbox again because it’ll be closer to the native environment dev’s are already familiar with thus making it a repeat of this gen where the majority of multi-platform games are ported to the PS4 .

          Really, the only way for this to not be the case is if Sony are using a pure Windows-based OS and MS aren’t.

  • Osc89

    That required internet thing is actually true. You need an internet connection whenever you first play a game (to register it) and it needs to go online once every 24 hours or the games stop working.

    • Chazz

      I can’t find anything about needing to go online to register games and the 24 hour thing was clarified as a potential scenario, not a confirmed aspect of the service.

      • Golic

        In an interview with Kotaku, Microsoft vice president Phil Harrison provided a bit of muddled clarification regarding the console’s online strategy.

        “There are many devices in your life that require the Internet to function,” he said. “Xbox One is no different in that it requires, at some point in the beginning and at various times through its on state, to connect to our cloud and to our Internet.”

        When Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo pressed Harrison on the specifics of how long you could be offline before the Xbox One stopped you from playing a single-player game, Harrison responded with, “I believe it’s 24 hours.”

        • Chazz

          “and the 24 hour thing was clarified as a potential scenario, not a confirmed aspect of the service.”

          I’ll just put that there again…

  • Sirengx

    …It looks like a VCR mixed with a Wii.The always online schtick is hilarious. So apparently you aren’t supposed to have a life or go anywhere or you get screwed over.

    Nothing innovative or original. I’ll stick with PS4.

    • Chazz

      See above for “always online schtick”.

      Nothing innovative or original? You’re clearly a Sony fanboy but be somewhat logical.

      The gap in specs between the 360 and the One is greater than PS3 to PS4. The design is very different to previous xbox designs and very clever if you know anything about marketing. The controller has a nice ergonomic focus which Sony are still struggling with. Lastly, cross-platform is the way technology is going. Now which system do you think will be more adaptable to that environment over the next 5 years (or whatever the shelf life of this console gen is)?

      • TheDeadman19

        Well, the PS4 came out when? Like 5 years after the Xbox 360, so of course the PS3 had better specs.
        As long as I haven’t held the controller, I’m not saying anything. To both of them. But I can image hitting the Share-button on the PS controller everytime you have to use the touchpad.

        The design is ok, but the HUGE kinect sensor is bothering me.

        Specs look good and so do the PS4 ones. Always depends on how well the devs can work with them. But Xbox never had trouble with that and Sony said they made it easier to work with.

        Skype’s the only thing that I really want.

        “I think Microsoft might be Skynet” <– THIS

        • Chazz

          It was only 1 years difference between the PS3 and 360 and the difference in specs was not what it should’ve been.

          As for the controllers? Look how long Sony have stuck with the same controller design? Even if the new one is an improvement it’s unlikely to match the xbox controller which has been properly ergonomic from day 1 (save for it originally needing giant’s hands πŸ˜› )

          Specs are comparable with MS keeping production costs down by using GDDR3 memory and allowing devs to use all 8GB as opposed to Sony’s higher priced GDD5 8GB where 1GB is tied up in system operations. Sure it’s possible that GDD5 will be beneficial but unlikely since it is the console market and it’s generally a generation or two behind PC.

          I agree on the kinect but that could be okay depending on how the camera works. It’s not centred so it could sit neatly next to a centre speaker and blend in nicely, who knows.

          Also, the devs will undoubtedly be able to work better the xbox. It’s MS. Everything they use is PC based.

  • ThunderDragoon

    Ugly looking thing, but that’s the only negative thing about it. I have a feeling the PS4 will be ugly too lol. I like the new controller. It’s nice. The new Kinect looks cool too. That’s so weird that it’s going to be boxed with the console. Having a camera in everyone’s home seems pretty freaky. I think Microsoft might be Skynet lol. I’m excited to see what games the Xbox One is going to have. If they’re not a majority of FPS games, I might actually buy this.

  • Marty McFly

    I’ll stick with the PS4, when I eventually buy it… I’ve have my same original model from the first PS3. Still running strong. I don’t consider myself a “Sony fanboy” but I definitely prefer Playstation over Xbox. I hate the Xbox controller, it’s too bulky. Plus, if we’re talking about appearance alone the PS3 is much cooler looking than the Xbox 360. I have never owned an Xbox, and never plan on it. I’ve had a PS since the first PS1 came out, same thing when PS2 came out.

  • REmake

    And I’ll I wanted to do was play games on it. Also Chazz need to hop off the Xbox dick in the comments here.

    • Chazz

      I’m an equal opportunities console guy. PS1 and PS2 still remain in my top 5 consoles. The other three being SNES, Mega Drive 2 and N64.

      I’m just here to straighten things out and get them facts straight πŸ˜›

  • John Marrone

    You Playstation fanatics are stubborn people. Shits like Coke and Pepsi. Xbox offers the best entertainment in one quality package by far. Love the switching over from tv to games to music is as fast as old school channels… Love how the 3 processors work together.. just not sold yet on the gaming. The demo vid looked good but you know thats cinematics. I want to see gameplay. Trippy shit that the new kinect can even see/monitor your heartbeat too. Shits a total upgrade.

    To me its like this, kiddy gaming up to adult / experienced gaming…

    WII / NINTENDO
    PLAYSTATION
    XBOX
    PC

    I’d be 100% PC if I werent addicted to trying for achievements on the box.

  • sascha henschel

    everything you need to know about XBox One.

    What about the price..?