Microsoft debuted the Xbox One this afternoon live from a tent on its Redmond, Wash., campus, putting to end months of speculation about the company’s next-generation video game console. The console will be available “later this year.” Microsoft exec Don Mattrick called it out as an “all-in-one” box. The core strategy is “simple, instant and complete.” It was debuted alongside a new gamepad as well as a new Kinect motion camera.
The system itself is all black and features a two-tone finish with both matte and gloss in equal measure; a slot-loading Blu-ray optical drive sits out front on the left face, while a power button with the traditional incomplete circle symbol is emblazoned on the right side (which looks to be touch-based). A new Kinect was also unveiled, and it powers the console — “Xbox On” is being trumpeted as the most important feature. There’s instant switching from the Xbox One dashboard to live television (which seems to confirm that HDMI-in rumor), and a live demo showed off impressive speeds. “Switching between live tv and all your games and entertainment is now as simple as using a remote,” Microsoft’s Yusuf Mehdi said. He also demonstrated gesture controls for the console’s UI, quickly snapping back to the dashboard with a pinch command.