Technology giant Microsoft unveiled its latest gaming console today to the world at a lavish launch event at its Redmond campus in the USA. The Xbox One, dropping the familiar 360 suffix, employs the latest technology in gaming consoles to compete directly with Sony’s PlayStation 4 console.
The PS4 was announced earlier this year, but gamers will be able to get a look at the new device at a launch event on 10 June, where the actual console and launch titles will be revealed during a session at the annual E3 conference.
Microsoft’s Yousef Medhi took the delegates at the reveal through the new functions of the Xbox One, demonstrating how the device is capable of voice activation and navigation. He showed off how the unit flips seamlessly between television, gaming and music services.
He demonstrated the home gestures, by simply grabbing the screen in mid-air and pulling it out – which switched the current view to either the game screen or a movie. Snap Mode, as he demonstrated, allows the Xbox One to snap an Internet Explorer mini browser to the right-hand side of the screen – for easy browsing.
Skype will also be made available for the Xbox, which will allow for group chats, using the snap mode to bring up a small interface during the screen.
Microsoft’s Marc Witten gave more details about the new Kinect, which is more accurate than the previous version. “Kinect has been completely redesign, faster and supports the full family. It has unprecedented precision, and game will create a new experience. Now the world will be crisp, in full 1080p. Kinect offers the best experience, revolutionised capabilities, and can even pick up the transfer of weight and focus on better depth,” he said.
He added that the new controller, which features sharper corners, now feature over 40 new design innovations, a better battery compartment and feedback into the triggers. “This is your controller, built by gamers, for gamers,” he said.
The Xbox One will make use of 8GB of RAM, USB 3.0 ports, 500GB of hard drive storage, WiFi Direct for communicating with the new controller and other devices, five billion transistors,
Charlie Fripp – Consumer Tech editor