Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past month, you’ve undoubtedly caught wind of all the hullabaloo surrounding the next generation game consoles from Microsoft and Sony. Tech sites have been going wild with predictions on which machine will win the living room for the next few years, and while many have already dubbed Sony’s PlayStation 4 as the winner of the “console wars,” we think Microsoft’s console deserves recognition for some of its features.
Microsoft understands that not everyone uses their consoles solely for gaming, so they built their machine to be an all-in-one entertainment hub – hence choosing the name Xbox One even though it’s a third generation console. And if the name wasn’t clear enough, Microsoft’s design language makes it abundantly clear that the box is meant for more than just gaming. The two-tone, two-textured exterior is surely intended to communicate the Xbox One’s dual purpose.
In addition to playing games, the console also functions like a cable box. If you’re a cable or satellite TV subscriber, Xbox One will give you seamless access to all your favorite channels right from the console – no input switching necessary.
But that’s not even the coolest part. Microsoft has also outfitted the console with voice and gesture controls, so switching between TV and games is as easy as saying “watch TV,” or “go to game.” This might not be the most groundbreaking feature, but based on what Microsoft showed off at its press event last month, this live switching feature works incredibly fast, which makes One more appealing as an entertainment platform.
Microsoft’s new console also comes with the ability to multitask, meaning you can not only switch between games, apps, and live TV without needing to hit pause, but also run apps side by side on the same screen. How awesome would it be to watch the news while simultaneously fighting off a horde of flesh-eating zombies? Or watching live sports while also keeping tabs on your Fantasy team?
Sony’s console might’ve won the hearts of serious gamers, but Xbox One’s futuristic features and innovative interface give it a leg up in our book. Unfortunately, the console won’t be available until November, but you can pre-order one now on Microsoft’s site.
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