Announced at last June?s Electronic Entertainment Expo, Microsoft has finally released the Xbox One S. Initially offering the 2TB bundle for $399, the biggest question that needs to be answered is, should you buy it?
The primary selling point for Microsoft on the Xbox One S is its ability to play UHD or 4K games. However, these games are not due until next year when they launch Project Scorpio. Nonetheless, Xbox One S lists quite a number of features that are hard to miss.
As mentioned previously, the Xbox One S is capable of playing 4K games. But that?s not all! It can also play and stream 4K movies as well as HDR videos.
On the outside, the Xbox One S is 40 percent smaller than its predecessor. It measure 9.125 x 11.7 x 2.5 inches only. Weighing at only 6.4 pounds, it?s almost ?portable?. Also, gamers can say goodbye to that awfully bulky power brick as the Xbox One S features an in-built power supply.
Instead of putting the USB to the side of the console, Microsoft has relocated the USB port to the lower left part of the front face. On the opposite side of the USB port just below the power button, Microsoft added an IR Blaster. Gamers can now navigate through the systems dashboard with a remote.
The 2TB bundle sports a ?robot white? casing with black adornments. Microsoft has switch the diagonal slats in favor of ?circular holes. There is also a discernible opening on one side of the unit for a 5-inch ultra-quite fan.
Much of the rear remains the same. However, Microsoft has finally ditched the Kinect on this iteration of the Xbox. Gamers who want to make use of the Kinect would need to get a special adapter for it.
Unfortunately for gamers, most of the headlining capabilities of the Xbox One S don?t come out-of-the-box. Users will still need to sit thru lengthy downloads in order for them to enjoy features like UHD streaming, 4K Blu-ray playback and HDR video. However, once out of the way, enjoying them, including Cortana, can get pretty sweet.
Althought the current offering is with the 2TB bundle at $399, Microsoft will be releasing two additional models, the 1TB and 500GB, at $349 and $299, respectively. The 500GB bundle comes with the ?Halo 5: Guardians? and ?Halo: Master Chief Collection.? While the 1TB is paired with the ?NFL Madden 17.? For $449, consumers can get the 2TB version bundled with ?Gears of War 4.?
Although the specifications given are quite impressive, the Xbox One S is nothing but a glorified UHD media player. The only reason to buy one is if the buyer currently owns a UHD television. After all, if one can wait for a few years for a new console, waiting for another six months or so is not an issue at all. Especially when Microsoft is due to release their true UHD gaming console sometime next year.
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