Price: $299 (expected)
Announcement: Jun/Jul 2024
Availability: Aug/Sept 2024
Microsoft is rumored to be preparing a refreshed Xbox Series S for launch later this year that will include a handful of minor improvements and changes, including upgraded connectivity capabilities, a (possibly) updated selection of ports, and a shrunken die that's more energy efficient.
Thanks to unredacted documents that were uploaded by Microsoft and accidentally published by the FCC, we know pretty much everything there is to know about this upcoming console, code-named Ellewood. We even know that Microsoft is planning a refresh of its entire hardware lineup, including the Xbox Series X, which is getting a new design and more.
Assuming these plans haven't changed since the documents were authored, here's everything we know about the new Xbox Series S.
Xbox Series S 2024 (Ellewood) Price & Release Date
Microsoft is expected to take the wraps off the new Xbox Series X in late June or early July, likely during its annual Xbox Games Showcase that usually takes place around this time. The hardware will then launch a couple of months later, likely around late August or early September.
According to the unredacted FCC documents, Microsoft intends to price the new Xbox Series S at $299, matching the current Xbox Series S with 1TB storage. The FCC documents imply that the new Xbox Series S will also ship with 1TB storage.
Xbox Series S 2024 (Ellewood) Design & Ports
Unlike the upcoming Xbox Series X refresh, the new Xbox Series S will maintain the same design as the existing Xbox Series S. Microsoft internally describes the refresh as "light," implying there's not too much changing on the surface.
It's worth noting, however, that the console render provided in the leaked FCC documents portrays the console as featuring a new USB-C port on the front, in place of the USB-A port that's present on the existing Xbox Series S. However, looking at the leaked specs table implies it doesn't have a USB-C port.
With that in mind, this confirms that Microsoft is at least considering equipping the new Xbox Series S with a USB-C port on the front. However, this isn't confirmed and Microsoft may end up sticking with the same port layout as on the current Xbox Series S. It's unlikely there will be any changes to the rear IO port selection.
Xbox Series S 2024 (Ellewood) Specs & Performance
As this is expected to be a light refresh of the Xbox Series S, we're not expecting much to change on the specs front. The internal FCC documents do mention support for Wi-Fi 6E, which will be a welcome upgrade with significantly faster wireless connectivity over the older Wi-Fi standard currently in use on Xbox Series S.
Additionally, the documents also mention support for Bluetooth 5.2, which would be a first for Xbox. Like the refreshed Xbox Series X, the Xbox Series S may also finally support Bluetooth accessories for the first time, meaning players will be able to pair wireless Bluetooth devices such as headphones or maybe even controllers to the console.
On the inside, we don't expect the new Xbox Series S to change much at all. Microsoft does note that the new console with have a smaller die, which should improve energy efficiency while delivering the same raw gaming performance as the current Xbox Series S.
Xbox Series S 2024 (Ellewood) Controller & Features
The biggest upgrade coming with the new Xbox Series S comes in the form of a new in-box controller dubbed the "Xbox Universal Controller," which is going to be a major upgrade with many new features. Externally, the controller will look and feel just like the existing one, but its feature set will be greatly improved.
This new controller, code-named Sebile, will include lift to wake capabilities and new connectivity features, including support for Bluetooth 5.2 and Xbox Wireless 2.0. The controller will also be able to connect directly to the internet, which will assist in reducing latency when playing games via Xbox Game Pass.
Sebile will also be able to connect to the Xbox app on your phone, where you can manage paired devices and other settings. Lastly, the controller is said to feature replaceable thumb sticks, improved longevity, quieter buttons, a replaceable battery that's also rechargeable, and new precise haptics.
On the matter of the console itself, thanks to the smaller SoC die, the Xbox Series S will have a 20% more efficient low power standby mode, which should help reduce the power it draws from the wall when in sleep.
Microsoft's documents also mention that the retail packaging will be made of 100% recycled materials, and the post-consumer recycled materials on the housing will increase to 30% of the overall chassis.
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