There have been rumors for almost two years that Microsoft would bring keyboard and mouse support to Xbox One consoles. Mike Ybarra, the corporate VP of Xbox at Microsoft, indicated earlier this year that the company was planning to add the mouse and keyboard support to Xbox One consoles. Though the software giant hasn’t officially confirmed it, a new report suggests that the Xbox One X as well as older Xbox consoles could get the keyboard and mouse support sometime soon.
Keyboard and mouse support would change a lot of things
Microsoft Poland announced that that the Xbox One X, Xbox One, and Xbox One S users would be able to play games using keyboard and mouse. The company has deleted the announcement, but not before folks at Gamer Professionals had spotted the press release. They captured a screenshot of the announcement and translated it from Polish to English using Google Translate.
The announcement says some users “prefer to conquer the virtual world with a pad in hand.” Others enjoy the “precision of the mouse movements.” There are many others who prefer playing on a keyboard over everything else. Now they can “choose these accessories and decide for themselves what they will use.” It indicates that the Redmond company could officially announce the keyboard and mouse support soon, probably sometime early next year.
There is little clarity on how the new feature would work, which apps would work with it, and whether the keyboard and mouse support would provide any concrete advantages. The Xbox One runs the Windows 10 core. Only time will tell whether Microsoft would tweak the console’s UI. Adding the keyboard and mouse support for Xbox One would significantly blur the line between PC gaming and console gaming.
The hardcore PC and console gamers are highly emotional about how they play, and they play more like professional gamers. The release of keyboard and mouse for the Xbox One X and older Xbox One models would change how the two communities play games and interact with one another. Engadget reported in September that keyboard and mouse capabilities would give PC gamers an advantage in multiplayer games.
Engadget added that the Redmond company would want developers to give gamers a choice of playing only against people with similar controllers. Such a move would ensure that people who don’t have extra peripherals or don’t want to buy them “won’t be at an automatic disadvantage.” HORI has already announced the keyboard and mouse for Xbox One. Priced at $150, the HORI TAC Pro One keyboard and mouse offers plug and play support with the Xbox One and Windows 10 PCs.
However, game developer Blizzard has opposed the keyboard and mouse support for Xbox One. Overwatch director Jeff Kaplan has said that the keyboard and mouse capabilities ruin the gaming experience, and could be seen as cheating. Blizzard has reached out to both Sony and Microsoft to disallow mouse and keyboard support on consoles.
Xbox One X has received an ‘incredible response’
Xbox One X is the world’s most powerful gaming console. It supports 4K HDR content and UDH Blue-Ray drives. The console has a sleek design, six teraflops of graphical power, 12GB RAM, and 326GB/s of memory bandwidth. It comes with 1TB of internal storage. It runs the same games as the Xbox One, though they are enhanced to offer a better visual experience on the Xbox One X. Polygon has described it as the “best console to play multiplatform games.”
Last month, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said the Xbox One X had received an “incredible response” from consumers without specifying the sales numbers. Microsoft hasn’t revealed the Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales numbers either. Nadella said during the earnings call that Microsoft would offer games as a service by giving users easier access to games on as many of its platforms as possible. It means the company is planning to bring together the console, PC, and mobile gamers into a single entity.
PS4 to beat the Xbox One this holiday season
Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter predicts Sony’s PS4 would outsell the Xbox One in the holiday quarter, even though the Xbox One X was launched just in time to take advantage of the holiday shopping season. However, Pachter expects the Xbox sales to be close the PS4’s holiday numbers. Sony could ship “3, 4, 5 million consoles in December alone.”
The primary reason Xbox One sales would be close behind the PS4 is the Xbox One S, which is still selling at a discounted price of $189. It’s hard to beat that price point. The Xbox One X too has been selling well, but it would be interesting to see how it performs after the initial euphoria is over.