Microsoft has explained its decision to once again use AA batteries to power the Xbox Series X
controller, saying it provides “flexibility” for players.According to Microsoft’s Jason Ronald (via Eurogamer
), both fan and internal feedback was split on the issue, with half preferring AAs and half preferring a rechargeable internal battery, like those found in Sony’s DualShock controllers. Ronald says the decision to stick with AAs as the default power supply ultimately provides players “flexibility,” as they can use those or purchase a rechargeable battery pack.
Those in the AA camp generally favor the option for its provided longevity, in terms of both battery and controller life. Fans of internal batteries argue for its convenience — simply plug in and play with no additional cost.
In speaking to Eurogamer, Microsoft also explained its decision to largely keep with the Xbox One controller design, noting players are both happy with and used to it. Though there aren’t many cosmetic differences, the company highlighted a number of changes it made in service to accessibility and performance: the Series X controller is slightly smaller to accommodate more hand sizes, a dedicated button was added to enable convenient game capturing and sharing, and bumpers and triggers now sport a matte finish for improved grip. It also features enhanced Bluetooth capabilities and a more intuitive d-pad.
For more on Microsoft’s next-gen console — including specs, features, and confirmed games — check out IGN’s Xbox Series X wiki. You can also read up on why Xbox Series X looks like a fridge.
Jordan is a freelance writer for IGN.