For those of you who have never played anything other than Flappy Bird, Xbox is Microsoft’s premium gaming console. Currently, in its third generation, the first edition was the Xbox in 2001, the first gaming console introduced in the American market since Atari Jaguar in 1996. The rest is gaming history.
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The Evolution of the Xbox
The very first device, the Xbox, was released in the American market in November 2001. The device was Microsoft’s first venture into the uncharted waters of 6th-generation gaming consoles. It competed directly with the more established Sega Dreamcast, Sony PlayStation 2 and the Nintendo GameCube. In 2002, Microsoft launched the Xbox Live service, allowing users to play online both with or without broadband. The Xbox sold over 24 million units worldwide! (source: It sold out in every market except Japan.
The second-generation of this device came in November 2005, named the Xbox 360. By June 2013, over 78.2 million units sold out worldwide. By this time, Microsoft had improved its servers sufficiently to keep people occupied with Xbox Live rather than Contour TV. The Xbox 360 was a huge success and cemented Microsoft’s position in the gaming platform market.
The Xbox One is the third and current generation of Microsoft’s gaming console. It certainly lives up to its pedigree. Released on November 2013, the console sold 1 million units in its first 24 hours. It went on to become the best-selling console during Black Friday and reached 2 million units sold in just 18 days.
Xbox One – The Latest and The Greatest
The Xbox One relies more heavily on the internet. It allows you to stream and record gameplay. It can also integrate with your set-top box and let you watch satellite or cable TV on the console guided interface. It also features voice control options based on Kinect.
In 2016, Microsoft unveiled a slimmer, sleeker, and better-looking version of the Xbox One at E3. E3, being the Mecca of games, was the perfect platform to launch the updated console. The reason the Xbox One deserves so much attention is its privacy and digital rights management.
It allows users to access they are physically or digitally purchased games on any Xbox One console. You can also share your entire library of games with 10 family members or friends. All they need is your Xbox Live account and an Xbox One Console.
Xbox Live – A Gaming Ecosystem
Owned by Microsoft, Xbox Live is a digital media delivery service, and an online multiplayer gaming service at the same time. First launched in 2002 following the Xbox, it became available for Xbox 360 users in 2005.
In 2016, an enhanced version of Xbox Live hit the world. It comes in two tiers. The Xbox Live Silver is a free-to-use, basic version. The Xbox Live Gold, which is a premium version with all the best features like multiplayer gaming.
By February 2013, reached 46 million active users. Each user has a unique Gamertag. Up to 15 characters in length, you can change your Gamertag using an Xbox 360 or an Xbox One. However, only the first time is free, subsequent changes will cost you anywhere between $8 – 10.
Newest Developments in Xbox Live
A valid Gamertag allows other users to locate and message you on Xbox Live. In a bold move, Microsoft has begun to expand its Xbox Live ecosystem. You now have the ability to choose any Gamertag you want. Just like on Discord, Battle.net, or Steam, your Gamertag will feature a “#” if it is already taken.
You can now use up to 12 characters in length for the new system. However, you don’t have to change your existing Gamertag if you don’t want to. If you want to switch tags, the first change is free of cost. However, subsequent changes will cost you $9.99.
There are also a number of other things to look out for in the new Gamertag system. For one thing, the new system has the ability to support more scripts. You have the freedom to choose your Gamertag from over 200 languages.
The latest Gamertag system rolled out today. However, currently, the system works only on the Xbox Game Bar and the Xbox app for Windows. The new system will likely hit mobile apps and consoles later this year. If you are just about done watching the HBO on Comcast, check out the new features. And do review them in the comments below. Keep the gaming community growing!