Xbox Series X can pause and resume multiple games simultaneously

Xbox Series X Logo
Xbox Series X Logo (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft has unveiled Xbox Series X, its upcoming next-generation Xbox console slated for holiday 2020.
  • Xbox Series X will expand the console's instant-on capabilities, including the option to pause and resume multiple games in system memory simultaneously.

Microsoft has dropped its first look at its next-generation Xbox plans, unveiling the flagship Xbox Series X. The Xbox One successor sets out to compile cutting-edge hardware into a streamlined home console, promising four times the processing capabilities of Xbox One X. That helps power a 4K 60 FPS baseline across titles, with support up to 8K resolutions and 120 Hz. It marks the latest milestone in the Xbox console family, currently slated for a holiday 2020 debut.

While Microsoft took to The Game Awards' stage to debut Xbox Series X, an accompanying interview with GameSpot provides additional insight into the design process. Partner Director of Program Management for Team Xbox, Jason Ronald, discussed Redmond's new approach to the next-generation platform, highlighting an effort to remove barriers across the ecosystem.

One crucial component is a switch to an NVMe solid-state drive (SSD) for Xbox Series X, paired with GDDR6 memory, helping cut loading times, and streamlining the end-user experience. Ronald also details improvements headed to the console's standby feature, allowing players to pause and resume multiple games on the fly.

Halo Infinite Master Chief

Source: Microsoft (Image credit: Source: Microsoft)

"Today, we have the capability of instantly resuming the last game that you were playing," Ronald told GameSpot. "Why can't you do that for multiple games? Many players choose to play multiple games at the same time, being able to instantly jump right back where I was, those are things that we can do with the platform level to make the gaming experience better. It's really about ensuring there's less waiting and more time playing because that's ultimately what we all want to do with a with the consoles and with the services that we have."

The Xbox One launched with "Instant On" capabilities, including an ability to stow games into memory, and immediately boot into past sessions upon turning on the console. That further streamlined the "pick up and play" nature, but was limited to just one title per console. Ronald suggests the Xbox Series X will support multiple titles, streamlining the ability to jump between your favorite titles.

The Xbox Series X is scheduled to launch holiday 2020, with pricing a firm release date yet to be confirmed.

Matt Brown

Matt Brown was formerly a Windows Central's Senior Editor, Xbox & PC, at Future. Following over seven years of professional consumer technology and gaming coverage, he’s focused on the world of Microsoft's gaming efforts. You can follow him on Twitter @mattjbrown.

10 Comments
  • Bioutifoule Pick up
  • I wonder if they are going to incorporate some kind of task manager to this, or at what point does it start dropping apps?
  • Good question, I'm curious about that as well. I'm guessing the games get 'tombstoned' and it would be interesting to see how it works with online games like mmos - I'm presuming it would just revert you back to the sign-in screen or something when re-opened after awhile.
  • Sounds like there's going to be more virtualization in this xb. Likely going to have each game open up in its own container and they get suspended and activated on the fly. Sounds pretty cool.
  • That box looks like something you can upgrade components like memory or hard drive, any word on that yet? Just curious :]
  • Hmm curious if it will have an hdmi input and out put like the xbox one
  • This is pretty awesome to me, is a friend's jumps on while I'm playing a single player game and he's like, hey let's do an escape in Gears 5, or run Tiamat in Neverwinter, I can switch over and I'm at the menu of the new game. I also often have multiple games on the go at once so that slight time saver is nice, plus I'm just over watching splash screens.
  • Well, one would hope that with the SSD and faster hardware that splash screens would only pop up for a few seconds at most.
  • Awesome. The ability to resume multiple games has been something I've been wanting. Also the loading times kill me. I remember Nintendo loading times being so much faster. I don't know how it is with the switch since I haven't purchased one yet. I've just learned to live with the Xbox loading. So happy it could possibly be faster.
  • There is a fair abit of loading on the Switch in games like Zelda BOTW but that's only when you enter a new place i.e. from the open world to a dungeon or shrine. Once the open world is loaded there is hardly any loading at all which is nuts given it's SOC and the size of the map.