Microsoft this evening has finally given their long-awaited next generation gaming console a name, announcing the Xbox Series X. The device, formerly known as Project Scarlett, is said to be four times more powerful than the current Xbox One X, and along with its new Xbox Wireless Controller will be available in the Holiday 2020 timeframe.

Microsoft has been drip-feeding information about their forthcoming console for the better part of a year now, so today’s announcement of the name and revealing the final design is the latest element in that campaign. The black, monolith-shaped box is certainly unlike any previous Xbox console design, and while touching it probably won’t make you smarter, Microsoft has definitely evolved the design of their hardware. The same goes for the new Xbox Wireless Controller that ships with the console, which incorporates an unusual D-Pad derived from the Xbox Elite Series 2 Wireless Controller. The controller will be compatible with Windows 10 as well.

While Microsoft is still not offering a detailed breakdown of hardware specifications at this time, the company has reiterated their E3 announcement – that the box is powered by an AMD APU combining their Zen 2 processor cores and next generation RDNA architecture – while revealing the first performance estimate for the console: four times the processing power of the Xbox One X. It’s not clear here whether Microsoft is talking about CPU performance, GPU performance, or both – but given that even AMD’s fastest discrete GPUs today don’t exceed 10 TFLOPS, it is likely a reference to the CPU side of matters and AMD’s much faster Zen 2 CPU cores (and going by comments made to GameSpot, this seems to be exactly the case).

As well, the company is reiterating the technical features for the console: hardware raytracing, variable rate shading, Xbox One backwards compatibility, and a “next-generation” SSD. All of which will be used to offer games at 4K@60fps or better, with Microsoft indicating that 120fps will also be an option for developers (no doubt driven by the high refresh rates allowed by HDMI 2.1). In their press release Microsoft is also announcing a new feature called “Dynamic Latency Input” (DLI), which although no specific details about the technology are being made available, is intended to minimize console latency in order to make it “the most responsive console ever”. I would expect to hear more about this in 2020 as the console gets closer to launch.

Finally, along with announcing the console itself, Microsoft has also released a separate video announcing a new Hellblade game, Senua’s Saga: Hellblade II. The trailer for the game is designed to show off the power of the console and is based off of in-engine footage; though it’s not clear at this time if it was captured in real-time or rendered offline.

Expect to hear a lot more about the Xbox Series X over the next year, as Microsoft ramps up to launch it for Holiday 2020.

Source: Microsoft

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  • Dragonstongue - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    too similar to Apple new launch by virtue of the way it looks, I bet you Apple had a hand in design this, just as they did with Win10 (funny that no one bothered to work hard on curtailing the metric ton of spam mail as of late)

    will that not be the day when the spam bots start trashing their business emails as well, then surely they will do something about it.

    I doth wonder if this will also ensure some of the long lingering "issues" with Win10 will be sorted out prior to launch of a new product into the same eco-system, or will the "compatible with" just be more a bullet point than anything else?
  • PeachNCream - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    Seriously, what are you smoking that can put you on a rant about spam e-mail, link said spam to an operating system directly, and then somehow feel there is a linkage between those things and an announcement about the next Xbox?
  • Alistair - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    Dragonstongue has never said anything coherent
  • milkywayer - Saturday, December 14, 2019 - link

    So many words yet saying nothing at all.
  • jtd871 - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    The FT-03 Mini rides again!
  • svan1971 - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    Christmas 2020 ? Why announce before Christmas 2019 ?
  • willis936 - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    They want to make sure no one accidentally buys an xbox one for Christmas 2019.
  • ksec - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    Now that console has SSD, I wonder if we could simply use it as a PC.
  • Midwayman - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    120hz available- everything runs at 30fps in reality.
  • Alistair - Friday, December 13, 2019 - link

    every Xbox One game with a patch will run at 120hz

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