Here is the new Xbox One
Microsoft has unveiled the Xbox One which will go on sale later this year. There is also a new Kinect and controller.
So what is new about the Xbox One?
It has 8 gigs of RAM, USB 3.0, Wi-Fi Direct, a Blu-Ray disc drive, 64-bit architecture and “practically silent operation.” The Kinect camera sensor is now 1080p and “when you’re exercising, it can read your heartbeat,” according to Microsoft.
You’ll be able to use gestures and voice control to interact with the new system. “Xbox, on” starts up the machine. “Xbox, watch TV” will open up your television.
The new console can carry out four times as many calculations a second as the Xbox 360 and 10 times more “animation depth and detail”.
Microsoft also introduced a feature called Snap Mode, for multitasking while watching television. You can use Skype, for example, to chat with friends while viewing something.
There’s a feature called “Xbox Trending” that shows what shows are popular. “This is the beginning of truly intelligent TV.”
Will it always have to be online?
Wired had the answer.
And what of the persistent rumors that Xbox One games will be “always online” – that is, that single-player games would require a constant online connection to function? As it turns out, those rumors were not unfounded, but the reality is not so draconian. Xbox One will give game developers the ability to create games that use Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing service, which means that they might be able to offload certain computing tasks to the cloud rather than process them on the Xbox One hardware itself. This would necessitate the game requiring a connection.
Are developers forced to create games that have these online features, and are thus not playable offline? They are not, Xbox exec Whitten said to Wired — but “I hope they do.” So the always-online future may come in incremental steps.
EA Sports announced new titles for the machine revealing Fifa 14, Madden 25, NBA Live 14 and the fighting game UFC would all launch on the platform within the next 12 months using a new games engine called Ignite.
Microsoft Studios also revealed that Forza Motorsport 5 – the latest in its own racing car franchise – would be available when the console launched.
The division added that it planned to release 15 games within the console’s first year, eight of which would be new franchises.
Another Microsoft unit, 343 Studios, revealed it would release a live-action Halo television series co-developed with movie director Steven Spielberg.
Activision also provided a first look at the next title in its Call of Duty series – Ghosts.
Xbox Live hill have a 300,000-server network. You’ll be able to look for match-ups in one game while playing another game, watching a movie or browsing the internet.
Content is stored in the cloud. “Achievements will become dynamic and changing. They tell your personal story of how you play, not just what you’ve done.”
SmartGlass is also set to play its role. Your tablet or phone will behave as if it’s part of Xbox One.
The big question is can it play used games? Well, it can and it cannot. All games are installed to the HDD to play.
What follows naturally from this is that each disc would have to be tied to a unique Xbox Live account, else you could take a single disc and pass it between everyone you know and copy the game over and over. Since this is clearly not going to happen, each disc must then only install for a single owner.
Microsoft did say that if a disc was used with a second account, that owner would be given the option to pay a fee and install the game from the disc, which would then mean that the new account would also own the game and could play it without the disc.
But what if a second person simply wanted to put the disc in and play the game without installing – and without paying extra? In other words, what happens to our traditional concept of a “used game”? This is a question for which Microsoft did not yet have an answer, and is surely something that game buyers (as well as renters and lenders) will want to know.