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Xbox Series S is an Extremely Capable Machine, Says Unity Chief Product Officer

Xbox Series S is an Extremely Capable Machine, Says Unity Chief Product Officer - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 20 November 2020 / 1,254 Views

Microsoft has gone a different route with the next-generation by releasing two different consoles with different specs. The Xbox Series X is designed to run games at 4K resolution, while the Xbox Series S is designed to run the same games but at a lower resolution of 1080p or 1440p. 

The lower specs of the Xbox Series S has lead to some concerns about how it will hold back the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5. However, Unity Chief Product Officer Brett Bibby in an interview with GamingBolt says it is an "extremely capable machine" and will be able to hold its own for the entire generation.

"It’s important to remember that the majority of people don’t have a screen that does 4K120, so there’s an audience that the S is designed for," said Bibby. "They perhaps won’t need some of the detail the X can achieve. However, it’s important to remember the S is an extremely capable machine, because those hardware differences are focused on delivering a similar experience at a lower resolution."

Bibby says the Xbox Series S has almost all the same features as the Xbox Series X with support for ray-tracing, the SSD, a nearly identical CPU, and the velocity architecture. The biggest difference comes with the GPU being about one-third the power. 

"That is a really smart approach, the device has ray tracing, an SSD, nominally the same CPU as a Series X," he said. "The only thing it lacks is the power to run at 4K- which simply isn’t always needed, the bedroom TV of some teenage gamer isn’t likely to be a 4K wallhanger beast, so its great for those situations. I would expect the Xbox Series S will be a real differentiator this generation."

Xbox Series S is an Extremely Capable Machine, Says Unity Chief Product Officer

The Falconeer developer Sala added that with Smart Delivery it is much easier for developers to deal with the power gap between the Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S. 

"With Smart Delivery, the Xbox team has ensured that games can be optimized regardless of which platform you’re playing them on," Sala said. "This will give creators the opportunity to tailor their releases to both the Series S and Series X without needing to make compromises for either player.

"I also think it will come down to what the game experience is intended to be. More and more it’s not about photorealistic graphics, it’s about innovative, incredible, fluid, engaging experiences which will outnumber in aggregate the number of purely realistic ones. At the end of the day content is king and the console with the best games will prevail."


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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14 Comments

SuperNintend0rk (on 20 November 2020)

IMO the biggest issue with the Series S is its tiny SSD. It can only hold a handful of AAA games and the only storage upgrade option makes it more expensive than the Series X. The value proposition doesn't make sense.

  • +3
Imaginedvl (on 20 November 2020)

Yep, I agree. The console is very good for the price. My son loves it so far. But the SSD is a bit too small, if someone could have been better for the offering and the price, it would be the SSD... But the rest is very fine :)

  • +3
SuperNintend0rk (on 20 November 2020)

Yeah it's fine if you mostly play indie games but if you think you'll need more storage, you're better off buying a Series X.

  • +2
Azzanation (on 20 November 2020)

Just uninstall the games you dont need.

  • 0
SuperNintend0rk (on 20 November 2020)

What if you play several multiplayer games regularly, like Halo, COD, and Fortnite? That could take up the whole SSD lol

  • 0
Mr Puggsly (on 20 November 2020)

I disagree, the biggest issue will probably be the RAM as that MIGHT impact software down the road. At the very least its the reason why games will have lower quality assets like textures.

Storage on the other hand should drop in price. You could even use cheap external storage for BC content. Use cheap external storage for BC content, save the internal storage for next gen content. Also, the Series S is getting smaller games.

  • 0
SuperNintend0rk (on 20 November 2020)

Yeah the RAM is lacking too. Regardless of what its biggest issue is though, I just don't see the value proposition of the Series S. Yes it's cheap but there are too many tradeoffs when you could spend $200 more for a true next gen console.

  • +2
holzi (on 21 November 2020)

This is only an issue for the core gaming audience. There are tens of millions of gamers who only play a handful of games in any given year if at all. The storage only becomes a problem if you want to play more than three large games at the same time which is something I don't see that many people doing, especially the more casual audience.

  • 0
SuperNintend0rk (on 21 November 2020)

True but they may not even be able to hold three given that some games like COD are now around 150GB in size. Casual gamers often play a lot of multiplayer games which tend to have big file sizes that get even larger with frequent updates.

  • +1
LivncA_Dis3 (on 21 November 2020)

tiny ssd hinders it a lot...

  • 0
KratosLives (on 21 November 2020)

What about the ram and bandwidth limitation, big difference that.

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Comments below voting threshold

DonFerrari (on 20 November 2020)

Will wait to see what they will deliver, because MS Said AC Valhalla would be best on Series X and that didn't show up, and on Series S not only it goes to 1080p but also is only 30fps so it wasn't only resolution that was lowered.

  • -8
Mr Puggsly (on 20 November 2020)

Actually the Series S version of AC:Valhalla seems to bounce be somewhere around 1100p to 1440p. Maybe it could hit 60 fps if it settled with dynamic 1080p. Bear in mind the PS5 and Series X versions are often around 1440p.

  • 0
DonFerrari (on 21 November 2020)

1100 is 20p over 1080p so dunno why the correction. But yes I'm aware of the Series and PS5 versions dropping to as low as 1440p and that DF said Series X should drop to 1080p to keep 60fps in some areas. Still it should at least have been offered as an option a locked 1080p60fps for series S even if the other aspects needed to be decreased to fit.

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