With Sony releasing its mid-cycle upgrade to the PS4, the PS4 Pro, many analysts predicted that it was only a matter of time before Microsoft followed suit. And true to their predictions, the XBox One X has been announced.
Due to ship starting 7 November 2017, this addition to the XBox lineup truly rings the death bell for the traditional console upgrade cycle. But who is the product aimed at and is it worth the mid-cycle upgrade?
Traditional consoles see a lifecycle of about five to seven years. That is, if you buy a brand new console today, you can expect that it will be supported by the manufacturer and game developers for around five to seven years. This has been the case since Sony began with Playstation updates.
However, as audio visual technology outside of the console sphere leaps forward, consoles manufacturers can no longer afford to wait so long before updating their systems. Point in case – The XBox One X.
Given that the current XBox Console is still a monster of a machine and capable of playing all of the games currently available, the XBox One X isn’t aimed at casual gamers. Instead, with the addition of native 4K resolution support, Microsoft is aiming this console squarely at hardcore gamers who have been champing at the bit to play their beloved games in 4K resolution.
In addition to an improved resolution, the new consoles can also render frames much more effectively, resulting in smoother gameplay and much less latency. Adding to this, Microsoft also claims a 30% faster CPU will allow for much faster game load times. All of this is done within a footprint that Microsoft says its smallest yet.
Is it worth the upgrade is a question for yourself? However, consider the following statistics:
- The console is 4.5 times more powerful than the original XBox console.
- The new console can play native 4K games without the need to upscale.
- Improved rendering at 60fps.
- 12GB of RAM, with 9GB available to coders to take advantage of.
- Backward compatibility for all XBox franchise games
- Faster game loads
- Less latency
If any of those specs are important to you, then upgrading to the new XBox console is going to be something for you to genuinely consider. It is particularly important to point out that the new console will play the entire back catalog of XBox games. That means you can continue to buy new games from the Groupon Coupons page for GameStop and still have them work on your new console.
If you are happy with your current console and either doesn’t have any games that can display at 4K or simply don’t have a television capable of showing you 4K resolution, then this isn’t what a gamer would consider an essential upgrade.
Why might you hold off?
If you are heavily into the idea of playing your games using a VR system then you are out of luck with this update. While Sony pushed ahead with its VR system, Microsoft is still yet to release a comparable product for its XBox lineup. Many analysts believe that the next iteration of the console will bring with it the delivery of Microsoft’s VR vision and could be the console to wait for.