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Xbox One hardware revisions, June announcement hinted at by FCC docs


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Game console revisions are pretty standard stuff, combining improved manufacturing processes, smaller form factors, and lower prices to keep sales going strong. However, rumblings about a PlayStation 4K and vague statements about the Xbox One's hardware future make this generation's revision possibilities a lot more tantalizing than usual.


At least on the Xbox side of things, we have one more piece of information thanks to a crafty German user at the famed NeoGAF gaming forums. On Tuesday, "Mike R" noticed two FCC filings by Microsoft, both filed in March, for wireless radio devices. The filing for part number 1683 appears to have clear ties to the original Xbox One's WLAN module FCC filing, as both include a 202kB "user manual" PDF with a "1525" model number designation—and in the old filing's case, that brings up a guide to the Xbox One's legal warnings.


The other FCC filing for part number 1682 has a few differences, including a longer list of attached "exhibits" and a lack of that specific user manual PDF—but it has other commonalities, including another "User Manual (system) rev" PDF that is 213kB in both filings. The 1682 filing has a short-term confidentiality request that expires on June 25, weeks after the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo, while the 1683 filing's confidentiality won't expire until July 29.


The 1683 filing seems to point to a minimal-revision Xbox One (i.e. an XB1 Slim) that will be made public by the end of June, which would give Microsoft the opportunity to announce it at this year's E3. That suspected model's wireless chip has 802.11ac wireless capabilities, by the way, which would be a nice boost (not to mention seemingly essential for any wireless game-streaming access a la OnLive or PlayStation Now, which we know Microsoft has at least internally toyed with).


The other model, meanwhile, has enough commonalities to link it to the Xbox family of devices, but that could mean anything. Is this the beefed-up Xbox 1.5 that gaming chief Phil Spencer hinted to at the end of February? Maybe it's an Xbox One that adds Blu-ray UHD support and ramps up 4k capabilities—or dumps its Blu-ray drive, changes storage capacity, and even downgrades its internals to fill a Roku-like device niche? (Heck, with so little information, we can go to speculation town: why not an Xbox-fueled, Amazon Echo-like device that has Cortana serve at your beck and call? Or an Xbox-shaped back-scratcher? Who knows.)


Since its wireless chip's confidentiality request doesn't expire until July, there's less reason to believe the second device will see an E3 reveal, but either way, the countdown has begun on what both of Microsoft's FCC filings are hiding.



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