At E3, Microsoft unveiled an update to its Xbox 360 gaming console, originally launched in 2005. The new Xbox 360 is “small, sleek, and quiet” and mirrors the look and feel of the Xbox One.
Microsoft’s Yusuf Mehdi said, that Xbox 360, which has sold more than 76 million consoles worldwide, will continue to be a mainstay in the Xbox lineup for years to come.
Along with a new appearance, the new Xbox 360, will also get host of new games including: “World of Tanks: Xbox 360 Edition,” “Max: The Curse of Brotherhood” action-role-playing game (RPG) “Ascend: Hand of Kul.”
“Xbox 360 offers unrivaled value – with more great games, an Xbox Live community with 48 million members, and a compelling line-up of apps, sports, movies, TV and music,” said Mehdi. As a gesture of thanks, “every Xbox Live Gold subscriber will receive two free Xbox 360 games per month until the release of Xbox One.”
The Assassin’s Creed 2 and Halo 3 will be among the first titles to be available for Gold subscribers, as well as a free download of “Fable III.”
Microsoft also announced new title to the current 4,500 Xbox 360 titles including “Call of Duty: Ghosts,” “Grand Theft Auto V,” “Battlefield 4,” “Madden NFL 25,” “Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag,” “Watch Dogs,” “Batman: Arkham Origins” and “Fable Anniversary.”
The new sleek Xbox 360 is available today for the same old price and editions across the U.S., U.K., Canada, Australia and Ireland, and will continue to roll out across all Xbox regions over the coming months.
Microsoft also announced that it has integrated live streaming site Twitch with Xbox One. The integration will allow Xbox Gold Live customers to instantly broadcast their game streams to Twitch channels, as well as view the streams as others.
In addition, users will also be able to view those streams within the Xbox One as well. And, can also stream games from the pros.
Twitch already has more than 35 million unique viewers a month, who watch about 1.5 hours of video play each day on average. Part of the reason for that viewership is that it has more than 600,000 unique broadcasters per month, of which 4,000 are part of the company’s partner program.
In the Xbox One E3 briefing, Chief Product Officer, Marc Whitten showed how Xbox One will offer you more immersive and tailored experiences, including a new level of cloud integration, expanded achievements, a richer SmartGlass experience, and a wide range of innovations coming to Xbox Live.
Whitten also announced that “every Xbox One system sold will include the new Xbox One console — which features a 500GB hard drive, 1 Blu-ray player and built-in Wi-Fi — the new Kinect, one Xbox One Wireless Controller and a free 14-day trial of Xbox Live Gold for new members.”
Xbox is also introducing a limited-edition commemorative bundle to fans, that guarantees “you will be able to purchase the new system on day one.”
“Each commemorative bundle will include an Xbox One system that comes in premium black packaging with a limited edition Xbox One Day One wireless controller, and a unique commemorative Day One Achievement,” Microsoft adds.
Gamers who reserve exclusive Xbox One Day One edition launch titles, also available in limited quantities at major retailers while supplies last, will receive special bonus content:
Xbox One launches in 21 markets this November.
“We were thrilled by the unprecedented demand we saw for Xbox One today. In the first four hours of preorder availability, we sold through most of our Xbox One Day One Edition inventory,” said John Love, Director of US Video Games & Software at Amazon.com.
Also, Microsoft shared that since October 2005, members have logged more than 72 billion hours on the service. “That’s nearly 8.3 million years!”
Gamers will also see big improvements with an all-new achievements system for Xbox One, Smart Match, and in the area of social, all new ways to record, edit, share and broadcast epic gaming moments directly on your TV.
In the broader field of entertainment, richer SmartGlass experiences and the new Xbox OneGuide (which enables you to navigate and watch live TV without switching inputs) are just the start of great changes to come.
In addition, the newly reengineered Kinect will introduce conversational voice throughout Xbox Live operations.
Below is a full summary of new featues coming:
- New Level of Cloud Integration: With our expansive Azure powered cloud backing Xbox Live, everything is more convenient and accessible.
- All of your games and entertainment to be stored and saved on Xbox Live, so you can instantly access them anytime, from any Xbox One.
- You do not have to wait for a system or application updates. Xbox One will always be up-to-date and ready for you – wherever you left off.
- Developers can take advantage of the 300,000 servers backing Xbox Live when we launch this fall to build immersive worlds.
- Expanded Achievements: The all-new achievements system for Xbox One is no longer confined to a single game. We want gamers to be rewarded for skill, participation and time-based challenges. Plus, developers can take advantage of the power of Xbox Live to continue to grow and expand their achievements over time allowing more opportunities for dedicated players to build up their score. And your hard-earned Gamerscore will carry over from Xbox 360.
- Smart Match: We completely reengineered matchmaking for a new generation of gaming. Smart Match expands options for game creators to match players based on skill, language and now reputation. Best of all, you no longer have to wait in lobbies while a match is found. And asynchronous matchmaking means you can play a game, watch TV or listen to music while Smart Match finds your perfect match, then you can jump in instantly.
- Social: Xbox Live on Xbox One brings you all new ways to record, edit, share and broadcast epic gaming moments directly on your TV, including:
- Game DVR: Amp up your bragging rights with Game DVR by capturing your highlights. Gamers can also use Game DVR content to provide real-time help for friends.
- Upload Studio: What better way to show off your greatest gaming moments than by adding a little flare. With the new Upload Studio you can add voice over, skins, slow motion and other awesome features to your recorded clips, then share them out and compare to your friends’ creations.*
- Twitch: We are excited to announce that Twitch is coming to Xbox One as a built-in, experience, allowing you to easily broadcast your games in real-time or to take on an interactive spectator role leveraging chat functionality as you view content from multitudes of other streamers. With Twitch on Xbox One, any gamer can be a broadcaster.
- Richer SmartGlass Experiences: Xbox SmartGlass for Xbox One allows you to turn your console on and off, adjust volume, manage your TV set-top box and Blu-ray, and integrates with Xbox One so you can search the programming guide without interrupting your current activity. Xbox SmartGlass also gives you full control over your game to start a game, launch multiplayer, view achievements, see real-time progress updates during gameplay, receive in-game tips, purchase Add-ons and more.
- Xbox OneGuide: Now you can navigate and watch live TV without switching inputs. Your Xbox Live Gold membership includes access to the OneGuide, where you get TV and entertainment that’s tailored for you, discover what’s trending with the Xbox community, and use your voice to search by network or name. You can also always know when your friends are online and ready to play your favorite game, even when you’re watching TV.
- Conversational voice: We’ve completely reengineered Kinect to take full advantage of the new Xbox One architecture. The new Kinect is more precise, more responsive and more intuitive. And voice commands and controls are now more conversational, making it easier to find and enjoy your games and entertainment.
Changes coming with Xbox One:
- Transactions Using Local Currency: You told us you want the ability to purchase games, movies, apps and entertainment in local currency, so we are excited to announce that as part of the fall 2013 update, we are moving away from Microsoft Points. All transactions will now take place using local currency, also known as money!
- Xbox Live Gold: We are bringing the Xbox Live Gold membership from Xbox 360 to Xbox One starting at the same $5 per month for a one-year membership, and now anyone in your home can access many Xbox Live Gold benefits on your Xbox One at no additional cost. Your primary Xbox Live Gold membership also travels with you to any Xbox One system. Xbox Live Gold offers a premium interactive entertainment service on Xbox One that spans across games, TV shows, movies, music, sports and more.
- Skype: Skype for Xbox One changes the way you keep in touch with friends on your TV. With your Xbox Live Gold membership:
- You will get Skype group video calling, currently a Skype Premium experience. No matter where your friends and family are, you can bring up to four of them together on your TV from the comfort of your living room. And, if you use Skype on either a Windows or Mac, you’ll benefit from group video calls when you sign into Skype there too.
- Reputation: Your new Xbox Live Reputation plays a prominent and valuable role rewarding healthy participation while reducing troublemakers and cheaters. A unified system across Xbox Live and all of your games allows for you to have much more control over who you play with while giving you new and exciting ways to get even move involved in your community.
Update 06/15: The award-winning franchise continues on Xbox One, beginning in 2014–Halo Xbox One E3 2013 Teaser:
Check out this presentation by Marc Whitten, Ashton Williams and Torin Rettig at Xbox Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) Media Briefing. The demo includes Xbox One’s new features and partnerships such as Game DVR, Project Upload, Twitch and SmartMatch.
Update 06/18: Xbox 360 marked the 29th consecutive month that Xbox 360 was the best-selling console in the U.S. last month, selling more units than any other platform, according to new data from the NPD:
- “Total retail spend on the Xbox 360 platform in May (hardware, software and accessories) reached $149.8 million, the most for any console in the U.S.
- During the month of May, Xbox 360 held seven of the top 10 console game titles including: “Dead Island: Riptide,” “Injustice: Gods Among Us,” “Metro: Last Light,” NBA 2K13,” Call of Duty: Black Ops II,” “BioShock Infinite” and “Halo 4″.”