After Sony’s impressive “PS4” reveal (sort of) – even without showcasing how the actual system would look like – the bar was set fairly high for rival Microsoft.

Microsoft held a reveal for their new console, only a few hours ago. And the PS4’s main competitor will now officially be known as the “XBox One”.

Here’s a first look at the strikingly average looking new console:

Not exactly aesthetically pleasing… on the outside at least. But looks don’t really matter that much anyway right… right… anyone? Okay, she might not win any beauty pageants, but it’s what’s on the inside that really counts.

Which brings us to;

The Specs

The “XBox One” sports a major hardware upgrade in the form of…

– 8 GB of RAM

– An 8 Core CPU

– 500 GB HDD

– USB 3

– Blu-ray Drive

– WiFi Direct

– HDMI Input and Output

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So, almost identical to the “PS4″…

The Controllers

The “XBox One” uses three different input methods, those being; the new Kinect, Smartglass and the regular controller with a few new features.

Kinect:

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The Kinect 2.0 will ship with every console from day 1 of release.

– New censor

– Instant response for gestures and voice

– It will have a 1080p camera

– can even read your heartbeat

Smartglass:

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– Smart device integration

– Use your smart phone or tablet as a remote

Controller:

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The new controller, while very similar to the old one, seems improved in the areas that actually count to real gamers.

– Dynamic impulse triggers

– Redesigned D-pad

– Improved Ergonomics

Features

There were a few features that grabbed my attention when I watched the reveal event, but all-round, I was not overly impressed with what I saw.

The whole premise of the new console seems to be, to become the center of your entertainment world. It will effectively become the hub of your TV, movie, music, internet and gaming experience.

– The voice control capabilities were pretty cool and seemed quite responsive. The console recognizes your voice and greets you when you power it up (by simply telling it to turn on). This new level of voice control seemed to work with the system really well; you can tell it which channel you want to watch and it’ll tune you in, where in the user interface you want to go and it’ll take you there, and a lot more.

– Along with voice, come gesture controls. There are gestures for almost everything; from flipping through pages, to switching between the internet and a movie you’re watching. It’s cool, because unlike a TV remote – which you’ll probably lose on a daily basis – It’s much tougher to lose an arm or your voice.

Overhauled Xbox live. Players will be able to download games in segments, meaning they can play the game while it downloads, and updates are downloaded and installed in the background. Skype and ability to record gameplay are also new additions.

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Extra Info

– The “XBox One” does not require that you be online the whole time… just once a day. Apparently you’ll need to go online at least once every 24 hours with the new system.

– Your “XBox One” games can be played on a friends system, as long as you do it on your account. If you intend on lending your game to a friend, he’ll have to pay.

– Gamerscores from your 360 will carry over to the “Xbox One”.

My Thoughts

I’ve always preferred PlayStation over Xbox, I’m not 100% sure as to why, but I just do. I was really exited to see what Microsoft had to offer with this new console, I hoped this next Xbox would finally be the system to turn me away from my beloved Sony. But, even though there were some cool features the “Xbox One” boasted, it didn’t leave much of an impression on me.

It is undeniably cool, and it seems like a great console for doing pretty much anything you want to do, but it just didn’t live up to the hype, and I’m left feeling a little let down.

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It’s just not the “ONE” for me, and unless Microsoft pulls some insanely awesome new feature out of their ass for it at E3, it’s going to stay that way.