Microsoft announced its next generation console, the Xbox One, in May 2013, following on the heels of PlayStation 4 news and the Wii U release.
The Xbox One is aiming to be an all-in-one entertainment device that can merge live TV with online gaming. For example, in a special deal with the National Football League, Xbox is able to make watching games interactive by, for example, updating fantasy scores live and bragging about it to online friends. It would also offer access to viewing player stats and watching highlight reels.
In another exclusive deal, between Microsoft and Call of Duty manufacturer Activision, Xbox One owners will have access to Call of Duty content before anybody else.
In addition, the Xbox One will have the ability to play Blu-ray discs, a feature that Sony offered on PlayStation 3. The Xbox One comes with an upgraded Kinect bar that boasts better voice recognition and motion sensors. The operating system is also upgraded and appears with a Windows 8-type of style.
Microsoft said the Xbox One will require a 24-hour Internet connection to allow for the necessary daily updates. In addition, Microsoft has stated the Xbox One will place restrictions on used games and game sharing among friends.
Microsoft expects to roll out the Xbox One ahead of the holiday season, but many stores have it available for preorders.