The Xbox Series S - a budget next-gen machine to compliment the mainline Xbox Series X - has been rumoured for months, but Microsoft finally confirmed the console's existence this morning following a major leak on Twitter.
A promotional video showing both the Xbox Series X and S, alongside prices and release dates for both consoles, began trending this morning. The short video highlighted the smaller XSX and revealed a retail price of $299. This coincided with a report from Windows Central confirming the price, and announcing that the Xbox Series X will retail at $499. Both consoles will allegedly be launching November 10th.
Microsoft didn't confirm the whole leak, but did officially announce the Xbox Series S console in response, featuring the same design seen in the leaked video and the same price of $299. The Microsoft post did not clarify if the information surrounding the Xbox Series X price or launch date was also correct, but considering it responded at all, and the Series S info was spot on, it seems like a safe bet.
It's a weird way to announce a console after a weird year of news, rollouts and reveals, but some have wondered whether the "leak" was an intentional play on Microsoft's part to force Sony to reveal the price of the PS5 and then subsequently undercut them.
It's a bit tinfoil-hat thinking, but it wouldn't be the first time companies have made "leaks" part of a marketing strategy, and it has been widely reported that the two companies are essentially in a game of chicken with each other to see who announces their price first.
For now though, the Xbox Series S is being touted as a cheaper way to experience next-gen features, and for many a sub-$300 price point will be incredibly appealing, and likely one Sony can't match even with their cheaper digital version of the PS5.