The Xbox is a brand of game consoles made by Microsoft, which also makes and supports them. Microsoft is mostly a software company, but in the early 2000s, it tried making gaming consoles. Since then, it has been doing well. The Xbox is one of the most popular video game consoles on the market right now.
Find here a list of the generations and models of Xbox consoles in the order that they came out. From the first Xbox, which came out in 2001, to the latest and greatest Xbox consoles, which came out in 2022, here is a list of all the generations and models.
xbox consoles in order
First generation: Xbox
The original Xbox was released on November 15, 2001, in North America, February 22, 2002, in Japan, and March 14, 2002, in Australia and Europe. It was Microsoft’s first foray into the gaming console market. As part of the sixth generation of video game consoles, the Xbox competed with Sony’s PlayStation 2, Sega’s Dreamcast (which stopped American sales before the Xbox went on sale), and Nintendo’s GameCube. The Xbox was the first console offered by an American company after the Atari Jaguar stopped sales in 1996. The name Xbox was derived from a contraction of DirectX Box, a reference to Microsoft’s graphics API, DirectX.
The integrated Xbox Live service launched in November 2002 allowed players to play games online with or without a broadband connection. It first competed with Dreamcast’s online service but later primarily competed with PlayStation 2’s online service. Although the two competing services were free, while Xbox Live required a subscription – as well as broadband-only connection, which was not completely adopted yet – Xbox Live was a success due to it having better servers, features such as a buddy list, and milestone titles such as Halo 2 (released in November 2004), which became the best-selling Xbox video game and was by far the most popular online game for the original Xbox system.
Second generation: Xbox 360
The Xbox 360 was released as the successor of the original Xbox in November 2005, competing with Sony’s PlayStation 3 and Nintendo’s Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles. As of June 2014, 84 million Xbox 360 consoles have been sold worldwide. The Xbox 360 was officially unveiled on MTV on May 12, 2005, with detailed launch and game information divulged later that month at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). The console sold out completely upon release in all regions except in Japan. Several retail configurations of the core Xbox 360 model were offered over its lifetime, varying the amount of RAM and internal storage offered.
The Xbox 360 showed an expanded Xbox Live service (which now included a limited “Free” tier called Silver), the ability to stream multimedia content from PCs, while later updates added the ability to purchase and stream music, television programs, and films through the Xbox Music and Xbox Video services, along with access to third-party content services through third-party media streaming applications. Microsoft also released Kinect, a motion control system for the Xbox 360 which uses an advanced sensor system.
Two major revisions of the Xbox 360 were released following the initial launch. The Xbox 360 S (typically considered as “Slim”), launched in 2010, featured the same core hardware but with a redesigned, slimmer form factor with a smaller-sized 250 GB hard drive. It also added integrated 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, TOSLINK S/PDIF optical audio output, five USB 2.0 ports (compared to the three from older versions) and special port designed for the Kinect peripheral. The Xbox 360 S replaced the base Xbox 360 unit, which was discontinued, and sold at the same price. A cheaper Xbox 360 S unit, removing the 250 GB drive while adding 4 GB of internal storage, was released later in 2010; the unit allowed users to hook up an external storage solution or purchase a 250 GB internal add-on.
The second major revision of the Xbox 360 was the Xbox 360 E, released in 2013. It featured a case style similar to the upcoming Xbox One, and eliminated one USB port and the S/PDIF, YPbPr component and S-video connections, but otherwise shared the same specifications as the Xbox 360 S.
Third generation: Xbox One
The Xbox One was released on November 22, 2013, in North America, as the successor to the Xbox 360. The Xbox One competes with Sony’s PlayStation 4 and Nintendo’s Wii U and Switch as part of the eighth generation of video game consoles.
Announced on May 21, 2013, the Xbox One has an emphasis on internet-based features, including the ability to record and stream gameplay, and the ability to integrate with a set-top box to watch cable or satellite TV through the console with an enhanced guide interface and Kinect-based voice control.
Following its unveiling, the Xbox One proved controversial for its original digital rights management and privacy practices; while Microsoft touted the ability for users to access their library of games (regardless of whether they were purchased physically or digitally) on any Xbox One console without needing their discs, and the ability to share their entire library with 10 designated “family” members, all games would have to be tied to the user’s Xbox Live account and their Xbox One console, and the console would be required to connect to the Internet on a periodic basis (at least once every 24 hours) to synchronize the library, or else the console would be unable to play any games at all. After an overwhelmingly negative response from critics and consumers (who also showed concerns that the system could prevent or hinder the resale of used games), Microsoft announced that these restrictions would be dropped. Microsoft was also criticized for requiring the Xbox One to have its updated Kinect peripheral plugged in to function, which critics and privacy advocates believed could be used as a surveillance device. As a gesture toward showing a commitment to user privacy, Microsoft decided to allow the console to function without Kinect.
On June 13, 2016, Microsoft announced the Xbox One S at E3 2016, which featured a smaller form factor, as well as support for 4K video (including streaming and Ultra HD Blu-ray) and HDR. At E3 2017, Microsoft unveiled Xbox One X, a high-end model with improved hardware designed to facilitate the playing of games at 4K resolution.
Since November 2014, Microsoft has stated it will not release sales numbers for the Xbox One line. Industry estimates project global sales of the Xbox One family to be about 51 million units. Xbox head Phil Spencer said that while they do internally track sales figures, they do not want their developers to be focused on these numbers as to affect their products, and thus have opted not to report further sales of Xbox hardware going forward.
Fourth generation: Xbox Series X and Series S
The fourth generation of Xbox models, simply named Xbox, includes the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S that launched on November 10, 2020. Both are considered members of the ninth generation of video game consoles alongside the PlayStation 5, also released that month.
The Xbox Series X and Series S are high- and low-end versions comparable to the Xbox One X and Xbox One S models, respectively, with all games designed for this model family playable on both systems. The Xbox Series X is estimated to be four times as powerful as Xbox One X, with support for 8K resolution and up to 120 frames-per-second rendering, with a nominal target of 4K resolution at 60 frames per second. The Xbox Series S is a digital-only unit with less graphic processing power, but can still render at a nominal 1440p resolution at 60 frames per second with support for 4K upscaling. Both consoles features support for new graphics rendering systems including real-time ray-tracing, and the new Xbox Velocity Architecture that works with the internal SSD drive to maximize the rate of texture streaming to the graphics processor, among other features. Besides games for this new console family, both consoles are fully compatible with all Xbox One games and most hardware, as well as all backward compatible games that were playable on the Xbox One from the Xbox 360 and original Xbox console.
To help transition consumers, Microsoft introduced its Smart Delivery system which most of its first-party games and several third-party games will use to offer free updates to Xbox One versions of games to the Xbox Series X/S version over the first few years of the consoles’ launch.
Xbox Series X
Xbox head Phil Spencer stated that Microsoft was prioritizing high frame rates and faster load times over higher resolutions; the Series X achieves this via the better-matched capabilities of the CPU and GPU.
The Xbox Series X is powered by a custom 7 nm AMD Zen 2 CPU with eight cores running at a nominal 3.8 GHz or, when simultaneous multithreading (SMT) is used, at 3.6 GHz. One CPU core is dedicated to the underlying operating system. The integrated graphics processing unit is also a custom unit based on AMD’s RDNA 2 graphics architecture. It has a total of 56 compute units (CUs) with 3584 cores, with 52 CUs and 3328 cores enabled, and will be running at a fixed 1.825 GHz. This unit is capable of 12 teraflops of computational power. The unit ships with 16 GB of GDDR6 SDRAM, with 10GB running at 560GB/s primarily to be used with the graphics system and the other 6 GB at 336 GB/s to be used for the other computing functions. After accounting for the system software, approximately 13.5 GB of memory will be available for games and other applications, with the system software only drawing from the slower pool. The Xbox Series X target performance is to render games at 4K resolution at 60 frames per second, with the CPU being about four times as powerful as the Xbox One X CPU and the GPU twice as powerful. The Series X can support up to 120 frames per second and can render up to 8K resolution.
The Xbox Series X’s console form is designed to be unobtrusive and minimalistic. It has a 15.1 cm × 15.1 cm (5.9 in × 5.9 in) footprint, is 30.1 cm (11.9 in) high, and weighs 4.45 kg (9.8 lb); though it is configured in this vertical orientation, the unit can also be used on its side. Its forward-facing features present only the main power button and an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive. The top of the unit is a single powerful fan. Spencer stated that the console is as quiet as the Xbox One X. The Series X includes an HDMI 2.1 output, the storage expansion slot, three USB 3.2 ports, and an ethernet port. The console does not include an infrared blaster or HDMI pass-through like the Xbox One line, supporting HDMI-CEC instead. An earlier leak had suggested a TOSLINK port for digital audio, but this was eliminated in the final design. However, the console still has an IR receiver integrated into its controller pairing button next to the front USB port.
Xbox Series S
The Xbox Series S is comparable in its hardware to the Xbox Series X, similar to how the Xbox One S relates to the Xbox One X, but has less processing power. While it runs the same CPU with slightly slower clock frequencies, it uses a slower GPU, a custom RDNA2 with 20 CUs at 1.55 GHz for 4 TFLOPS, compared to 12 TFLOPS of the Series X. It ships with 10 GB of RAM, with 8 GB running at 224GB/s primarily to be used with the graphics system and the other 2 GB at 56 GB/s to be used for the other computing functions, and a 512 GB SSD storage unit with a raw input/output throughput of 2.4 GB/s. It does not include an optical drive, thus all games and software must be obtained digitally via Microsoft Store. It is intended to render games nominally at 1440p, with support for a 4K upscaler, at 60 frames per second, although it can go as high at 120 frames per second at this resolution. It starts at $299.99. Selected games can support native 4K resolution output on the Series S, such as Ori and the Will of the Wisps. Otherwise, the console has the same functions as the Xbox Series X, including ports, expansions, and game support.
Microsoft designed the Series S to easily fit inside of a small bag or backpack for portability and travel usage. The Series S unit is about 60% smaller by volume than the Series X, measuring 275 by 151 by 63.5 millimetres (10.83 in × 5.94 in × 2.50 in) in its vertical orientation. In this orientation, its large side surface features the major exhaust port for active air cooling, similar to the top surface of the Series X; additional vents are then located on the top of the Series S. Like the Series X, the front of the Series S features one USB port and a controller pairing button with an integrated IR receiver. The rear of the console includes the power connector, one HDMI port, two additional USB ports, and an Ethernet port. Like the Series X, the Series S can also be placed horizontally with the exhaust port facing upward to maintain airflow. The Series S launched in a matte white case along with a matching controller, distinguishing it from the matte black that the Series X uses.
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