Xbox Series X Appears to Feature Expandable Storage

The upcoming Xbox Series X appears to allow for expandable SSD storage upgrades, enabling larger downloads and faster streaming speeds.

On January 22, we reported on the Xbox Series X prototypes that leaked. The images displayed a long-rectangular port on the back of the system, that is now believed to be for storage expansion.

Thurrott reports that this slot is possibly meant for CFExpress SSD cards so that gamers can expand their storage. This interpretation makes a lot of sense given that games are getting bigger every year. After all, CD Projekt Red’s 2015 hit, The Witcher 3 GOTY takes about 60 GB of storage on Xbox One. That was 5 years ago; when Cyberpunk 2077 releases in September, I imagine its download will be massive.

Additionally, Phil Spencer recently claimed that Microsoft’s true competition is Google and Amazon, rather than Sony and Nintendo. As a primarily PC gamer, I’d have to agree with him. Microsoft has increasingly focused on its subscription platform Xbox Game Pass which is available on PC and Xbox One. Meanwhile, they are also entering the game-streaming scene. It’s easy to assume that on the upcoming Xbox Series X you’ll be able to directly stream your Game Pass games. A fast and powerful SSD upgrade could greatly increase Xbox Series X streaming capabilities, while also allowing for larger downloads.

However, these upgrades are currently to be extremely expensive; 512 GB CFExpress cards are selling for $599.99. Maybe Microsoft is creating its own storage upgrades for the system, or they expect the prices to drop in upcoming years. Obviously a $599.99 storage expansion is not enticing, and even worse than the nightmare that was PlayStation Vita storage cards. Microsoft must be planning a solution, after all, if you’re going to spend $599.99 on storage and roughly $499.99 on a console, why not just build an insane PC?

Ultimately, I think that it’s great that Microsoft will seemingly allow for upgrades to their upcoming console. In the current gaming generation, it’s very easy to overlook Microsoft. However, going into the next generation, it’s hard to deny that they are in an amazing position, boasting streaming and subscription services that trounce anything Sony and Nintendo have to offer. Not to mention, they also appear to have an upper hand on Google’s struggling Stadia platform.

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Josh Starr

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