Is it worth buying an Xbox One S or X with the Xbox Series X so close?
A pervasive ecosystem
Microsoft has already confirmed multiple times that the next-gen Xbox Series X will be fully compatible with all of your games and accessories out of the box, meaning that even if you bought an Xbox One today, it's essentially future-proofed in terms of content and services.
If you're interested in the ecosystem, there's no need to wait for next-gen. You can simply jump in and play right now. All of your games, saves, progression and even multiplayer titles will be cross-device compatible, so you're losing nothing from getting in on the ground floor today.
Microsoft also has a Netflix-like library of games called Xbox Game Pass (opens in new tab), giving you instant access to hundreds of titles for a modest monthly fee (complete with free trial).
Even beyond the Xbox One home consoles, Microsoft is working on an array of mobile technology to bring your Xbox ecosystem to more devices. Very soon, you'll be able to stream your Xbox One games via the cloud to any device, starting with Android and Windows PCs, with iOS likely to follow in the coming months. The service as of right now is called Project XCloud, and holds incredible promise for the future of the Xbox ecosystem.
Trade up, trade-in, and Xbox All Access
When it comes to the next-gen Xbox Series X, picking up a console today won't necessarily impact your decision to upgrade later for a few reasons. Firstly, the Xbox Series X won't have any of its own full-blown exclusives for at least a couple of years after launch, with games working across generations. Sure, they'll look and play far better on the Xbox Series X, benefitting from near-instant loading speeds and graphical boosts like ray-tracing, but you won't miss out on the latest games or opportunities to play with your friends even if you decide to upgrade later.
If you want to be ready to go on day one when the Series X launches in the holiday season of 2020, you have a number of options. You can either sell your current-gen Xbox on a site like ebay, where they regularly fetch a decent price (particularly if you keep it in good condition, complete with the packaging), and then put the money towards an Xbox Series X. Microsoft retail stores across the U.S. and in London also will allow you to trade-in and trade-up an old Xbox One console.
Finally, we also have Xbox All Access (opens in new tab) in some territories, which allows you to spread the cost of an Xbox One console across several months (or years even), complete with a direct upgrade path similar to your mobile phone contract. For as little as $20 per month you can get right in on the Xbox ecosystem, complete with the opportunity to upgrade to an Xbox Series X when the time comes. Unfortunately, it's only available in the U.S., U.K., and Australia as of writing.
Xbox on contract
Spread the cost.
Xbox All Access gives you everything you need to get started with gaming for a monthly price, starting at $20 per month.
Jump into digital
Budget gaming with a price
Secure your Xbox One S All-Digital Edition; Microsoft's new and ambitious disc-less console. It's the cheapest Xbox One ever made, bundled with a trio of downloadable games.
Cheap and cheerful
Thousands of games without breaking the bank
The Xbox One S might not be powerful enough for gaming on your 4K TV, but it sports thousands of games and 4K media for an affordable price.
For those who want the best-looking games
The Xbox One X is significantly more potent than any other console out there, providing the best-looking games built for your 4K TV.
Jez Corden is the Managing Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!