Microsoft has announced that Xbox One S and One X will gain support for AMD FreeSync, 1440p output resolution, and ‘Auto Low Latency Mode’. The latter is one of the features of the HDM 2.1 specification.
FreeSync for smoother gaming
If you are a PC gamer you probably already know AMD’s FreeSync system. It is designed to eliminate tearing and stuttering in gameplay by constantly synchronizing the screen’s refresh rate to the games’ frame rate output.
- ”Xbox One S and Xbox One X will support variable refresh rate on AMD Radeon FreeSync displays. Freesync technology helps get rid of tearing and stuttering while gaming, enabling the display and Xbox One to work together to create a smooth and seamless gaming experience. Freesync allows for a supported TV or monitor to synchronize its refresh rate with your console,” Antal Tungler from AMD announced.
AMD clarifies that Xbox One S and One X will support FreeSync 2, which further enables HDR (High Dynamic Range) support over HDMI. In addition, Xbox One S and One X will support 1440p output when connected to PC monitors.
Microsoft has previously said that Xbox One X will later get support the HDMI 2.1 standard’s VRR (Variable Refresh Rate), which is similar to FreeSync but designed for TVs. However, this does not appear to be included with this upcoming software update. Update: It appears that the update will also include HDMI 2.1's VRR feature, according to Brad Rosseti, Xbox Program Manager,
HDMI 2.1: Auto Low Latency Mode
Microsoft has also announced that it will bring the HDMI 2.1 feature called ALLM, or ‘Auto Low Latency Mode’ to Xbox One. This will enable supported TVs to automatically switch to game mode when you start playing a game on your Xbox One S and One X.
- “Xbox One will also begin supporting Auto Low Latency Mode on supported TVs later in 2018, including select models from Samsung. Auto Low Latency Mode will recognize when a game is being played and automatically switch your TV to a low-latency mode,“ Microsoft said.
This will happen only when starting a game. Xbox One S and One X will not force your TV into game mode when you watch Netflix or UHD Bu-ray.
ALLM is one of the less talked about features of HDMI 2.1 but it is one that will encourage TV manufacturers to step up their work on game modes. At CES 2018, the HDMI Forum confirmed to FlatpanelsHD that TV manufacturers can add certain features of HDMI 2.1 to existing devices via firmware updates. That is exactly what is going on here.
Samsung’s 2018 TVs that will be available starting later this month will be some of the first TVs to incorporate HDMI ALLM, which will enable them to do as described above.
Microsoft also spoke about the new features on its Inside Xbox show, starting from the 1h38m mark. You can watch the video below. Microsoft's Spring 2018 update for Xbox One will be available to everyone soon. HDMI ALLM is coming "later in 2018".
Xbox Spring 2018 update
Antal Tungler from AMD announced that Xbox One S and Xbox One X will support variable refresh rate on AMD Radeon FreeSync displays. Freesync technology helps get rid of tearing and stuttering while gaming, enabling the display and Xbox One to work together to create a smooth and seamless gaming experience. Freesync allows for a supported TV or monitor to synchronize its refresh rate with your console.
‘Share to Twitter’ will allow you to share clips and screenshots that will be viewable in-line, directly on your Twitter feed. This new feature will also automatically place that screenshot or video into your Twitter media library, as well as suggest hashtags, such as the game title.
Coming later in 2018: Xbox One will also begin supporting Auto Low Latency Mode on supported TVs later in 2018, including select models from Samsung. Auto Low Latency Mode will recognize when a game is being played and automatically switch your TV to a low-latency mode. This will enable you to continue using some of your TVs video processing options while you’re watching a movie or Mixer stream, but be comfortable that any post-processing will automatically be turned off when you switch back over to a game.
The Microsoft Edge browser is also getting an update on Xbox One. The browser now looks and feels more like Microsoft Edge on Windows 10. You can also download and upload files, including pictures and videos, directly to your Xbox One or attached storage device. For example, if you find a great picture online that you’d like to use as your Xbox One background, you can download the image with Microsoft Edge and set it as your custom background.
Xbox One X and Xbox One S now support output at 1440p resolution for games and media; 1440p resolution, sometimes referred to as “2560x1440” and “QHD,” is a popular choice for PC users. With over a million and a half more pixels than 1080p, this resolution fills the gap between Full HD and 4K displays.
Share Controller on Mixer was announced. Mixer streamers on Xbox One will be able to share their controller directly with viewers on Mixer.com. Once shared, a viewer on their PC can help control the experience with either an on-screen virtual controller or with a physical controller connected to the PC. This is available now for testing on the Xbox Insider Alpha ring.