Microsoft debuted the Xbox One, the next generation of its wildly successful Xbox franchise. Dozens of guests and Microsoft reps took the stage to introduce the new hardware and many of its bells and whistles. So here’s what we’ve learned so far!
Massive technological upgrades. The new Xbox is powered by an 8 core CPU sporting 8GB of on-board RAM, coupled with a minimum 500GB HDD which makes the new Xbox a powerhouse of silicon. HDMI inputs as well as outputs allow you to route your TV signal and controls straight through your new gaming console, as well as (thankfully) Blu-Ray capability (which is a nice touch following Xbox 360’s loss during the HD Disc wars).
It looks like the new Xbox One will NOT require an always on connection, however Microsoft IS trying to curtail the used game market. There may be an Xbox Live fee to install (or authorize) a previously used game on your console. And unfortunately it does look like backwards compatibility is a no go.
Updates to the Kinect system are right next door to mind blowing. The new camera setup is capable of monitoring motions down to the wrist and even finger level! Understanding of human musculature allows it to map muscle exertion and energy usage through posture and movement. And apparently, it can even monitor your heart rate via its dead electronic eyes! The new controller, while keeping the tried and true overall design, will allow the user to map reactivity of buttons to enhance gameplay for both pros and n00bs.
And the new changes to Xbox live will allow the system to monitor your game play capability in an effort to match you up with compatible online players for multiplayer excursions in your favorite games!
Couple all this with wildly higher polygon counts, AI for animals inside gameplay environments, a new Halo TV show coming out (can we say interactive game/tv a la Defiance?), and integrated control over your entire home entertainment system, and the Xbox One is ready to take your voice commands into the next generation! Just walk into your living room, say “Xbox on!”, and strap in!