Microsoft introduced its next-generation Xbox console at its pre-E3 press conference in Los Angeles. Codenamed “Project Scarlett”, the console will be 4x more powerful than the Xbox One X, Microsoft claimed. The device promises faster load times, real-time ray-tracing capabilities, Xbox One backwards capability and will support 8K gaming.
It will arrive in Holiday 2020. However, the Redmond-based tech giant did not show the next-gen console would look like, or reveal its retail price.
The next-generation Xbox console, which has no marketing name yet, uses AMD’s Zen 2 architecture and Navi graphics. The console also uses GDDR6 memory and an SSD that doubles as virtual RAM. Microsoft said it will have ray tracing and frame rates up to 120 fps.
The Xbox Scarlett is squarely aimed at Sony’s PlayStation 5, which is also expected to be launched next year. Earlier this year, Sony in an interview with Wired Magazine detailed the specifications of the forthcoming console. The PS5 would be based on AMD’s Zen 2 8-core CPU and Navi graphics, 8K graphics, a custom unit for 3D audio, PS4 backwards compatibility and support for ray tracing for realistic light and shadows.
During the keynote presentation, Microsoft also announced the highly-anticipated Halo: Infinite that will launch on Scarlett during Holiday 2020. At the keynote presentation, Microsoft also announced some details about its cloud-based game streaming service, Project xCloud. The company didn’t reveal many details on how its xCloud will work, but it did announce that the service will be available for public preview this October.
Microsoft also shared more information about the Xbox Game Pass, the subscription service which lets you play a library of games for a small monthly fee. Microsoft also revealed the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller 2, an updated version that now features adjustable stick tension, redesigned bumpers, and a rechargeable battery with up to 40 hours of backup. It goes on sale on November 4 at a price of $179.99.
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