There has been much hype and criticism for Microsoft‘s challenger in the next generation console wars. The Xbox One exceeded its sales predictions and is in high demand with little supply. Let’s breakdown the pros and cons of the device to see if it’s right for you this holiday season.
The interface is somewhat different than its predecessor, but it turns out to be much more difficult to understand and customize. The 360 has a great separation of content, giving the user a sense of navigation. The Xbox One uses icons that are similar to Windows 8 which make it perplexing to any user who’s unfamiliar with the Windows system. The integration of all three components (console, Kinect and controller) are all solid. After purchasing the console, I realized that it’s not backwards compatible with my 360. By using the workaround involving hooking my 360 to my Xbox One using the HDMI In feature, I was able to play all the great titles I know and love. Hopefully Microsoft will release an update in the near future.
I must say, the saving grace of the Xbox One is the Kinect. It has improved greatly over its former counterpart. It now sports a 1080p camera that makes video calling with Skype a marvel of beauty. It makes the future of video calling a reality. The Kinect is the best way to navigate through the interface. In fact, it’s much better than using the controller. I find myself just talking to my Xbox (crazy sounding, I know). However, you have to use specific commands rather than speak naturally, as with programs like Siri.
The controller feels fantastic in your hand. It grips well and the thumbsticks have been redesigned to fit user’s thumbs perfectly. There’s no dead space on the thumbsticks, so the user gets much more accurate precision when it comes to fast paced games. The console is a little on the bulky side, but it fits into almost any design aesthetic due to its distinct lines. The overall design seems minimal with busy work to fill in the dead space.
The integration with power is absolutely phenomenal. I say “Xbox On” and my TV, Xbox One and 360 turn on at the same time. Because of this feature, the Xbox One is a keeper. Even if you only use it for this feature, you’ll love it. While snap does come in handy and it’s better than pulling out your phone, the system lags because of it. It often feels like I purchased a beta of the console since it’s so buggy. Of what I’ve played of Ghosts, the difference is clear and the next gen has my heart. If you have $500 to make an early investment, I strongly recommend it.