Upgrading to Xbox Series X is like jumping from 2D to 3D games, says Xbox exec

Promotional shots of the Xbox Series X hardware (Image credit: Xbox)

Xbox's Phil Spencer has made some big claims for the Xbox Series X, the next-gen Xbox console expected to launch in late 2020. Spencer's latest comment says the feel of the console is so different from its current-gen predecessors that it imitates the arrival of 3D gaming in the 1980s.

Replying to a question on ray tracing on Twitter, Spencer wrote that "the feel of games this upcoming generation will change as dramatically as any since 2D to 3D" – but is this really the case?

Spencer specifically cites Dynamic Latency Input (or DLI), which is designed to improve input-to-display feedback, lowering latency and helping to ensure button presses and the like are enacted onscreen as fast as possible.

It may well be that close-to-immediate feedback – along with other improvements in the next-gen console – will help Xbox Series X games, like Halo Infinite, feel like a different proposition entirely. While we're a few months away from finding out from ourselves, and talk of features like DLI may seem a little meaningless – most gamers just want to play their games, after all – this ambition is still intriguing in itself.

Talk it up

The initial question was put to Phil Spencer by a French account called DiagnosedWhity, which appears to be associated with the Xbox Ambassadors program, so it doesn't quite seem like Spencer is spontaneously responding to random fan tweets – but there's a clear message being put out, saying that the Xbox Series X is the biggest jump in Xbox hardware we've ever seen.

There are certainly plenty of reasons to expect the Xbox Series X's performance to dwarf that of the Xbox One – including the addition of an SSD (solid state drive), beefed-up quad-core processor, and a host of other internal hardware improvements.

It remains to be seen whether that uptick in processing will equate to a similar gaming experience as playing in 3D for the first time – and even if it does, it will likely only really be felt by those with gaming TVs and gaming monitors able to show off the Xbox Series X's full potential (to achieve 4K at 120 frames per second, for example).


Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist, and former News & Features Editor for TechRadar, where he specialized in home entertainment gadgets such as TVs, projectors, soundbars, and smart speakers. Other bylines include Edge, T3, iMore, GamesRadar, NBC News, Healthline, and The Times.