Every other year since 2007, Apple has released an entirely new iPhone. In the intervening years, it’s upgraded the specs, added more functionality, but essentially left the phones unchanged, releasing an “S” version of the phone. Microsoft seems to be a fan of that strategy.
At a press event at this year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles—the largest videogame trade show in the world—Microsoft unveiled an upgraded version of its Xbox One console, which it first released in 2013. The new version, called the Xbox One S, is thinner and has more features than the earlier model, but it’s not wildly different. And rather like many iconic Apple products, it also comes in white.
The new Xbox supports 4K (the original could only output HD-quality video), has a hard drive up to 2 TB (instead of 1 TB), and has the power supply built into the box itself—meaning no more massive power converters sitting on the floor between the console and the wall. The Xbox One S will start at $299, the same price as the current Xbox One model, and will be released in August.
All this is essentially a stopgap to whatever Microsoft launches in 2017. It teased a new console, called “Project Scorpio,” that will apparently involve “high-fidelity virtual reality.” Rather like Apple, it seems that Xbox is setting itself up to have a massive 2017.