Gamers are wondering whether a more powerful ‘Pro’ version of the Xbox Series X is on the horizon, but will Microsoft drop an updated console this generation?

The Xbox Series X was released back in 2020 so if Microsoft were to drop a mid-generation upgrade to this console, it would surely be coming soon.

Even if there have been no signs of a new Xbox yet, this doesn’t mean that there won’t be one. Judging by the last console generation, there could be new versions of the Xbox Series X and S, but there are also a few reasons why Microsoft would wait until the next console generation.

Xbox Logo

Could Microsoft Follow the Xbox One X & S Release Pattern?

In the past console generation, Microsoft released the Xbox One S and Xbox One X. These revised versions of the console arrived in 2017, four years after the base Xbox One.

While the Xbox One S was a smaller and sleeker version of the console, the Xbox One X was a significant hardware upgrade on the base Xbox One. This shows that Microsoft is not opposed to releasing half-step consoles midway through a gaming generation.

Therefore, there’s certainly a possibility that we see an upgraded Xbox Series X at some point in the near future.

Despite this, more signs point towards Microsoft not releasing a new version of the Series X, in our opinion.

Xbox One X

Why Microsoft Won’t Release a More Powerful Xbox Series X

Despite Microsoft having released a more powerful version of its previous console, the Xbox One, the Xbox Series X may not get the same treatment.

Xbox head Phil Spencer told Bloomberg in June 2023 that he doesn’t “feel an imperative” to release a mid-generation Series X upgrade and said that “we’re pretty set on the hardware we have.”

This will be disappointing for many Xbox fans, especially as he didn’t share much about the thought process behind this. However, we’ve got a few ideas about why Xbox might be skipping an upgraded Series X.

The Possible Digital Xbox Series X

Firstly, leaked documents from Microsoft’s court case with the FTC revealed that an all-digital Xbox Series X was planned for a 2024 release. While this may not happen, it shows that the company was more focused on streamlining the console.

If plans for an upgraded Xbox Series X weren’t in the works previously, it seems very unlikely that it would be in development now.

Digital Xbox Series X Leaked Image
Image from Microsoft v FTC court hearing via The Verge

Game Pass & Backward Compatibility

Next, with Xbox’s shift in focus to Game Pass and commitment to backward compatibility, releasing a mid-step console doesn’t make too much sense.

Xbox is very much prioritizing giving gamers access over console performance, whether that is through Game Pass or backward compatibility. Therefore, releasing a slight upgrade on the Series X may not be the best use of Microsoft’s time.

Instead, Microsoft will likely focus on making its next-generation Xbox in order to get a headstart. With the PS5 dominating this console generation, releasing a next-gen console first could be key for Xbox’s success going forward.

While this will still be a few years away, it takes plenty of time and effort to develop a console. Therefore, Microsoft diverting its workforce to producing the next Xbox rather than an incremental upgrade would be a wise move.

the Xbox game pass logo

Xbox Cloud Gaming

Finally, Xbox’s shift to streaming games is apparent. And while not everyone has good enough internet to stream games yet, it is clear that Xbox believes that streaming games will take off in the next few years.

With Xbox Cloud Gaming on a range of devices, including phones and smart TVs, the need for consoles diminishes. We haven’t reached the point where consoles are obsolete yet, but developing consoles is becoming less important for Microsoft.

Of course, we expect to see a next-gen Xbox in the coming years. However, we will likely see fewer mid-generation iterations of consoles due to the shift towards cloud gaming.

Xbox Cloud Gaming Mobile

Of course, none of this has been confirmed just yet, and a ‘Pro’ version of the Xbox Series X could be in development, no matter how unlikely it seems right now.

Stay tuned for any major announcements for Xbox this year. We expect Microsoft to announce a digital version of the Xbox Series X later on in 2024!

author
Senior Staff Writer
Django grew up with a PlayStation controller in his hands and loves all kinds of games, from Football Manager to Yakuza.