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Microsoft’s All-Digital Xbox

Published by on: 03/28/2024

Series X Has Leaked

Microsoft seems poised for an all-digital future, folks. According to eXputer, the company is swapping the black coating on the Xbox Series X for white and pulling the disc drive for an all-digital refresh of its “most powerful Xbox ever.”

The gaming and technology website eXputer published a series of leaked images on March 27 of this new, all-white, all-digital Xbox Series X. Based on these relatively low-quality images, it looks like the bones of this new console are the same as the $500 Xbox Series X that’s currently on store shelves—which is a rectangular box with a waffle vent at the top that can be stored vertically or horizontally. However, upon further inspection, it’s clear that the new, white Series X lacks the disc drive on the front of the original model.

This change lines up with documents that leaked in September 2023 (which initially purported a cylindrical design instead of the shoe box aesthetic) that also removed the disc drive. On the back, the white Series X houses the same ports as the black Series X, meaning Xbox’s Seagate storage expansion cards should still work, allowing you to increase the console’s storage capacity. That’s great because some games, like the 140GB Call of Duty: Modern Warfare III, are monstrous, and you’ll have to download the entire file size of every game you’ll want to play on it. The new model will reportedly have an upgraded heatsink to cool the system better. The Verge corroborated eXputer’s report, too, saying the “leaked photos are genuine” based on additional documentation outlining the changes between the consoles.

 

 

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According to eXputer, the all-digital Series X will reportedly launch this June or July. It will also reportedly cost $50-$100 cheaper than the Series X, which puts it in the middle between the $300 Series S and the $500 Series X, price-wise.

One question remains: Will the refreshed Series X feature any other tech upgrades? Those aforementioned leaked Series X model files, which came from the FTC’s attempt at blocking Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, purported a mid-cycle update for the Series X that featured a cylindrical design, a new controller with haptic feedback like the PS5’s DualSense, better WI-FI support, less power consumption, and 2TB of internal storage instead of 1TB. It’s hard to tell if these leaked images eXputer has of the refreshed Series X will contain these same upgrades, but it at least seems that Microsoft’s plans for a major console overhaul have changed.

It makes sense that Microsoft is going all-digital. Some retailers appear to be done selling physical Xbox games because the company’s latest consoles are more associated with digital games in large part thanks to Xbox Game Pass. Big titles, like the recently released Alan Wake II and the upcoming Hellblade II: Senua’s Saga, have foregone or will forgo physical discs in their boxes. Publishers are questioning the effort it takes to port games to Xbox because of the console’s lower sales in Europe. And some of the company’s games are starting to show up on other platforms. Despite gamer dad and Xbox head Phil Spencer swearing that game preservation is “front and center” for the company, all these moves suggest the company’s is gearing up for an all-digital future, one that could reignite fears around preserving games.

 

 

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