After months of shortages, the Xbox Series S is now reliably available from multiple major retailers. The console, released in 2020, has been difficult to find until recently, and it’s still a challenge to find a store that carries the beefier Xbox Series X. Being the more powerful console, the Xbox Series X costs $499. Meanwhile, the smaller Series S lacks a disc drive and starts at $299.
The Xbox Series S restock means that you can pick up the console at retailers like Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, and more. We’re breaking down some solid places to find an Xbox Series S below. If you want to go big and can’t wait to pick up an Xbox Series X, Walmart is currently carrying the console for a marked up price of $721.88.
With two systems set at separate prices, it’s clear Microsoft is trying to get the new generation of Xbox into as many homes as possible. To that end, Microsoft is introducing Xbox All Access, a financial plan that will allow consumers to pay for their console of choice in installments. The Xbox Series S will cost $25 a month with Xbox All Access, while the Series X will cost $35 a month — both for 24 months. To sweeten the deal, both plans include Game Pass Ultimate.
Which stores have the Xbox Series X and Series S in stock?
As is to be expected with a next-gen console, no deals or discounts are currently available. While the Xbox Series S is restocked at all of these retailers, most of them are still sold out of the Series X. We’d recommend checking as many of these sites as possible and signing up for notifications to receive updates about Series X and Series S availability. If you don’t manage to land one now, you can hold out hope that new shipments will become available at a later date.
- Xbox Series S – $299.99
Tips on Finding an Xbox Series X in Stock
It’s no surprise that the Xbox Series X is still tough to find, given the system’s popularity and global supply chain issues. Still, there are ways to score the Xbox Series X if you know where to look.
Here are a couple of strategies to prepare for the next Xbox Series X restock.
- Check Out Used/Refurbished. Search for used and refurbished consoles at retailers that offer those options, such as GameStop and Amazon.
- Know the Timing. Know when to check for restocks. When not widely publicized, restocks tend to occur around 1:00 p.m. ET. Target is an exception, as they restock at 9:00 a.m. ET.
- Set a Deal Alert. When you set up a Deal Alert, you will get notified when the Xbox is restocked or when there is a sale.
- Sign Up for Store Memberships. If you’re signed up for a membership from retailers like Best Buy or Walmart, watch out for notifications on restocks. Also, consider downloading the app for the retailer of your choice to receive instant push updates on restocking.
This may be obvious, but don’t fall for Twitter links or deals that are too good to be true. When an item is hard to find like the Xbox, there will be opportunists out there who will try to scam you.
What Are the Hardware Specs on the Xbox Series X?
On February 24, 2020, Microsoft announced the Xbox Series X’s upgraded GPU will put graphical performance at 12 teraflops, which firmly places it above standard Nvidia and AMD graphics cards. To put that into perspective, 12 teraflops is roughly nine times as powerful as the original Xbox One console and twice as powerful as the Xbox One X. The Series X also implements GDDR6 memory technology.
The improved NVMe SSD aims to reduce game loading times, which enables gamers to hop into digital realms much faster. Additionally, the Series X will feature a new CPU developed by AMD and Radeon. The CPU will build on AMD’s Zen 2 and Radeon’s RDNA 2 models and aims for up to 8K/120fps performance on games. Microsoft is also working closely with HDMI Forum to get the highest quality HDMI 2.1 support.
The end goal is low latency and smooth visual performance on games, and while it will likely be a few years before most consumers (not to mention developers) are able to make full use of this power, the potential is inarguably exciting. Improved GPU/CPU from AMD also means the Series X graphics will feature improved lighting realism via DirectX Raytracing. Microsoft has patented a new form of variable rate shading (VRS) as well, which it claims will result in “more stable frame rates and higher resolution, with no impact on the final image quality.”
Another exciting feature is the new Quick Resume function. A basic version of this feature already exists for Xbox One and allows players to suspend a game while the console is in rest mode, negating the need to boot up the entire game from scratch when the console turns back on. The new and improved Quick Resume function will allow gamers to do this across multiple games, so you can squeeze in a few rounds of Overcooked while waiting for your next Fortnite match to load.
It’s clear that Microsoft designed the Series X to be a spec beast, even rivaling some of the most powerful gaming PCs on the market. Head of Xbox Phil Spencer boasted the new console’s attentiveness to latency via Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), which would help with input lag between the controller and the game input.
What Are the Hardware Specs on the Xbox Series S?
The Series S isn’t just the Series X without a disc drive. In fact, the Series S makes some big compromises on its internal components and is a significantly weaker system. When compared to the Series X, the Series S has:
- Less RAM (10GB compared to 16GB)
- Smaller SSD (512GB compared to 1TB)
- Slower CPU (3.6 GHz compared to 3.8 GHz)
- Weaker GPU (4 TFLOPS compared to 12 TFLOPS)
- Outputs at 1440p instead of 4K
- No disc drive
In reality, the differences shouldn’t be too noticeable. Because games will be running at 1440p instead of 4K on the Series S, you won’t need as much power to keep a solid framerate. There might be a bit of slowdown during loading screens or intense action sequences, but until people have more experience comparing them it’s hard to say how they will stack up over the years. At the end of the day, the Series S will suffice for most players – so long as you’re fine with its lack of 4K and a disc drive.
How Expensive is the Xbox Series X?
The Xbox Series X retails at $499, while the Series S starts at $299. Microsoft is also offering an Xbox All Access financial plan for the new consoles, aimed at making the barrier of entry a little less steep.
With Xbox All Access, consumers can pay for their new console in installments. The Xbox Series X costs $35 a month, while the Series S costs $25 a month for 24 months. The monthly payments also include Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, meaning you’ll gain instant access to tons of games. To learn more about the unique program, how to qualify and participating retailers, head on over to Microsoft’s official website.
When Was the Xbox Series X Released?
Both the Xbox Series X and the Series S launched November 10th, 2020. That was just in time for the holiday shopping season, and it sold out about as quickly as you would imagine. The console is wildly popular, and shortages of the Xbox Series X will likely persist throughout 2022.
What Games Were Available on the Xbox Series X at Launch?
The Xbox Series X has dozens of great titles that launched in tandem with the console, and it is backward-compatible with games from the past three generations. That means you’re able to play some original Xbox, Xbox 360 and Xbox One games on the Series X, which is a huge blessing to Xbox loyalists who have acquired a treasure trove of games over the generations.
As for new games, the following launched on November 10th:
- Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla
- Dirt 5
- FIFA 21
- Gears Tactics
- Marvel’s Avengers
- NBA 2K21
- Tetris Effect: Connected
- The Falconeer
- Watch Dogs Legion
- WRC 9
- Yakuza: Like a Dragon
In addition to these titles, there are even more titles that came out around November 10th, including The Medium and Dead Static Drive. Take a look at a recent trailer for EVERWILD – a new game from Rare studios – below:
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