Microsoft’s next Xbox is Xbox Series X, coming holiday 2020

Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox is officially called Xbox Series X. Microsoft revealed the name and console design on stage at the Game Awards today. The console itself looks far more like a PC than we’ve seen from previous Xbox consoles, and Microsoft’s trailer provides a brief glimpse at the new design.

The console itself is designed to be used in both vertical and horizontal orientations, and Microsoft’s Xbox chief, Phil Spencer, promises that it will “deliver four times the processing power of Xbox One X in the most quiet and efficient way.”

Microsoft used the Xbox Series X to showcase Hellblade 2, a new game from Ninja Theory that is being developed for its next Xbox console. While Microsoft has revealed the design here, the company isn’t revealing exact specs beyond what has been discussed previously.

The Xbox Series X will include a custom-designed CPU based on AMD’s Zen 2 and Radeon RDNA architecture. Microsoft is also using an NVMe SSD on Xbox Series X, which promises to boost load times. Xbox Series X will also support 8K gaming, frame rates of up to 120 fps in games, ray tracing, and variable refresh rate support. It will play existing Xbox One games, in addition to new titles.

Microsoft isn’t talking GPU performance specifics just yet, but Spencer has dropped some hints in an interview with GameSpot, and the graphics you see in the Hellblade 2 trailer were supposedly captured in a game engine, running on the console, in real-time. “We wanted to have a dramatic upgrade from the Xbox One base console,” says Spencer. “So when we do the math, we’re over eight times the GPU power of the Xbox One, and two times what an Xbox One X is.” The Xbox One X is 6 teraflops of GPU performance, so the Xbox Series X could be capable of 12 teraflops.

GameSpot also says the console is roughly as wide as Xbox One controller and roughly three times as tall.

Speaking of controllers, Microsoft also revealed a new Xbox Wireless Controller today. “Its size and shape have been refined to accommodate an even wider range of people, and it also features a new Share button to make capturing screenshots and game clips simple,” explains Spencer. It’s slightly smaller, but will retain the rumble triggers according to GameSpot. The updated controller will work with existing Xbox One consoles and Windows 10 PCs, and will ship with every Xbox Series X.

Microsoft’s Xbox Series X console will also include Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM) and Dynamic Latency Input (DLI) that will “make Xbox Series X the most responsive console ever.” Spencer says the Series X is “designed for a future in the cloud,” and it will combine hardware and software to “make it as easy as possible to bring great games to both console and elsewhere.”

Microsoft hasn’t addressed reports of the company’s plans for two next-gen consoles, but the Xbox “Series” X naming does suggest there won’t be just a single console. We understand Microsoft is planning two new consoles for Series X, with a second lower priced and less powerful console planned alongside the more powerful main console.

Microsoft has been working on Xbox Series X under the name Project Scarlett previously, and today’s naming follows confirmation from Sony that it’s choosing PlayStation 5 for the name of its next console. Microsoft is also claiming Xbox Series X will be the “fastest” and “most powerful,” in what could be a reference to having a more powerful console than Sony’s PlayStation 5.

We’ll have to wait and see which console comes out on top, though. Sony has not yet revealed the design of its PlayStation 5, but that hasn’t stopped Microsoft from surprising everyone with this naming and hardware reveal.

Update, December 12th at 10:40PM: Article updated with more Xbox Series X details.


Ok, I was expecting a Halo Infinite or Forza 8 trailer. We got an entire fucking Xbox instead.

Can’t say I saw that coming

A surprise to be sure. But a welcome one.

Though the console’s familiar name isn’t a complete surprise as most would suggest. I think it’s necessary.

I’m pretty sure the new Xbox Series X has an X because they’re trying to blur the lines between major console release cycles with services, software, and hardware backwards/forwards compatibility. They even emphasize the X in their promo video.
Calling something completely different (like PS5) wouldn’t help in blurring the lines.Tesla does this with their cars; the Model S/3/X get iterated on every year month but dont receive a name change unless it’s a completely new configuration (e.g. P100D). Xbox is doing the same here.

Hello there!


It’s hard to get excited about the console itself. It’s basically the same hardware as the PS5 in a different box. The only difference is that current-gen Sony is killing it with their exclusives while Xbox is a wasteland. They need to convince me that Microsoft has some actual damn content for their console this time around to get me excited.

Not sure wasteland is entirely fair – and it seems Playstation are moving away from exclusives as well with the recent shift to PC releases…

They are cross releasing MLB only because EA gave up on MLB, it’s part of the terms of the licensing.

The only difference is that current-gen Sony is killing it with their exclusives while Xbox is a wasteland.

What exclusives have ‘killed it’ since Spiderman showed up over a year ago?

Also, you’ll get MUCH more gaming mileage on an Xbox with Gamepass than on any other console at this moment.

Unless you hate games, of course.

Missed opportunity to say: SO XCITED

Look at the SIZE of it though, how far did they push the thermals? What’s the TDP? This could be a monster!

It’s really not that big though, it’s just the design of it that makes it look "big". It’s as tall as two CDs are wide, plus a little bit, by the looks of the disc tray. That’s probably shorter than the One X is wide. But then you build in the other two dimensions, and it probably ends up taking abou the same general volume as previous consoles.

I believe they were saying it’s small, not big. The "monster" reference is in terms of its relative power rather than its size.

It looks a lot like Corsair One series. They do demonstrate it is possible to pack in some serious power into a small space.

I think the way the photo is makes it look bigger than it is. The design does look good for thermals though. I can only imagine it will be a large fan the width of the full console drawing air from the bottom and out the top. Large fans are better for air flow vs noise.

it’s the width of a controller so around 6". it’s has the height of 3 controllers so around 12". 6×6×12 is pretty tiny. like a smart speaker.

Smart design to go with

I just really like what this will mean for game development… moving towards 8 cores as a baseline setup.

Same number of cores as this gen, but cores that aren’t netbook crap this time

That design is giving me last-gen Mac Pro vibes.

Also, I’m guessing the folks over at Sony are probably freaking out right now probably because they didn’t expect the official unveiling of this until probably E3.

It honestly wouldn’t surprise me if it did the same fan-core design the Mac Pro used, seeing the vent placement on the top.

I’m hoping MS goes one step further and just let you install Windows on it and use it as a PC. It’s got PC Parts anyway!

I thought this too, absolutely gives Ive-vibes

I like it. The problem with that design was that it wasn’t modular, which shouldn’t be an issue for a games console.

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