Two months after Sony unveiled the first glimpse of its forthcoming PlayStation 4 console and 19 days before the start of E3 in Los Angeles, Microsoft formally revealed its next “all-in-one” entertainment console – the Xbox One.
During a press conference that was broadcast live on the Spike channel and on the Xbox website, the company revealed the new platform will launch later this year, at an undisclosed price.
This go-round, the Xbox is positioned more as an entertainment hub than a simple video game console, placing as much emphasis on movie and video entertainment, Skype video calling and second-screen interaction as it does on advanced (and in some cases exclusive) new gaming capabilities.
The Xbox One console is said to offer eight times the graphic performance of the Xbox 360. It boasts 5 billion transistors, compared with 500 million on the predecessor, while the memory was boosted to 8GB from 512MB.
Also included is a new 500GB hard drive, Blu-ray–capable optical drive, and a custom AMD 40-nanometer system-on-a-chip with both CPU and GPU processes.
The “soul” of the Xbox One architecture was said to be its melding of three systems in one — the Xbox OS, the kernel of Windows and connecting the two for multitasking and effortless control.
The system is comprised of three core parts — the console, the motion-sensing Kinect 2.0 device and a new controller.
Microsoft also employs its Smart Glass technology that turns a mobile phone or tablet into a second screen to intelligently interact with the Xbox for enhanced, interactive viewing of TV shows, movies, music, sports and games.