A podcast released on Wednesday shed a little more light on the Xbox Series X features revealed earlier this week. The conversation between Microsoft’s Larry Hryb and Jason Ronald, director of Xbox program management, underscored the power and speed of the upcoming console, according to The Verge.
Notably, Hryb mentioned that a new "Quick Resume" feature could survive a reboot, essentially letting you shut down the console or stop in the middle of an experience and pick right back up where you left off. "You're able to go back to exactly where you left off," said Hryb, pointing out that it mimics the "always-on" nature of smartphones. Though the Xbox One has some similar capabilities, this feature takes it to a whole new level, and the console will allow users to switch between several saved games rapidly, like apps running in the background on your phone.
Who needs checkpoints? — Quick Resume offers a line of defense against power outages, software updates, or someone turning off your Xbox for prank or argument reasons, but it significantly diminishes the importance of saving points. A big focus of the new console seems to be based around the idea of giving users an instant experience, and letting them break off when they feel like it. Imagine not being locked to a load point.
“This is really powered by our custom-built SSD,” said Ronald about the console’s ability to save multiple games. “I can instantly jump between them or jump into them and resume exactly where it was when I left off.”
The Xbox Series X is going to be jam-packed with new features and beefy specs (like a GPU performance of 12 teraflops), and is expected to be launched just in time for 2020 holiday shopping. Besides boasting next-generation ray tracing and double the performance of the Xbox One X, the Series X will significantly improve user experience around game load times, save states (as evidenced by Quick Resume), and support four generations of backwards compatibility.
As more and more media competes for our attention, the ability to stop and start on our own terms becomes increasingly desirable. While this new tool makes it easier to play more games when the mood strikes, it also makes it easier to take a break. Maybe the next generation of game consoles isn't just about better graphics and sound, but a more healthy relationship with the users' time and space.