LOS ANGELES -- The rumors were true. Microsoft's chunky Xbox One is getting a slimmed-down redesign. The Xbox One S is a white, sleeker take on Microsoft's current gaming console, complete with up to a beefy 2TB hard drive and 4K video support. It's launching in August starting at $299.
Following a leak the day before, Microsoft made the Xbox One S official at its E3 2016 press conference today (June 13). The console's svelte design is 40 percent smaller than its chubby big brother, and -- like the Xbox 360 -- can be stood up vertically. Better yet, the new console ditches the unsightly external power brick that's been an Xbox hallmark since 2001.
The Xbox One S also introduces a new Xbox One Wireless Controller, which features textured grips and Bluetooth support. The revamped console sports a built-in IR blaster, meaning you should be able to sync it up with your cable box without the need for a Kinect.
Despite being physically smaller, the Xbox One S packs up to a 2TB hard drive, which is twice the size of the current biggest Xbox One internal drive. Perhaps more importantly, the console will offer 4K video streaming and 4K Blu-ray support, and will allow for High Dynamic Range (HDR) gaming. Sony's upcoming PlayStation 4 "Neo" is also expected to pack 4K video support, but details on that system are still scarce.
If you've yet to pick up an Xbox One, the S model's slimmer design and bigger hard drive make it seem like a no-brainer -- especially at a starting $299, $100 less than the Xbox One's introductory price. Heck, I might even trade my old Xbox One in for one.
However, Microsoft is also working on Project Scorpio, a VR and 4K gaming powerhouse that's set to launch late in 2017. Power users may want to hold off until then, but for everyone else, the S is a much prettier and versatile take on Microsoft's flagship gaming machine.