You can pick up your $500 Xbox One on Friday, November 22, Microsoft announced today on its Xbox news blog, sparing us the indignity of another techno-infused presser (slow clap from yours truly).
Microsoft chief marketing officer Yusuf Mehdi announced the system would be available in 13 markets, including Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain, the U.K. and the U.S. Expect the system to launch in “many more markets” next year, added Mehdi.
The news comes just after Mehdi hyped a few details about the system’s launch during a Citi Global Technology Conference presentation yesterday. Details like: the Xbox One’s CPU will be a hair faster than originally planned, bumped about 10% (from 1.6 GHz to 1.75 GHz). And: the system’s now in full swing, production-wise.
Microsoft recently bumped the GPU speed 6%, too, though I’m not sure why it opted to boast about such things publicly, since from a gaming standpoint, the gains are all but irrelevant. Chances are the company’s responding in a PR capacity to criticisms — baseless, in my view, and clearly marginal — that the system is less powerful than Sony’s less expensive PlayStation 4, which launches a full week earlier in the U.S. on November 15.
Here’s Mehdi’s take on those speed bumps in today’s announcement, which for its sheer emptiness, is probably another argument against letting marketing types reflect on technical perks:
What does this mean to you the gamer? It means that the Xbox One will have that much more power for developers to make their games and entertainment really shine.
Mehdi notes that Microsoft has “sold out of our pre-order supply in the U.S. faster than at any other time in our history,” then adds that the company is “making available a limited number of additional Xbox One Day One consoles for pre-order.” If you want to use Microsoft’s link to chase down a participating retailer, it’s here.