The 1TB expansion cards for the Xbox Series X and S will retail for $220, confirming a long-standing rumor.
That would mean purchasing an Xbox Series S, which only comes with 512GB of built-in storage, with this expansion card would bump its price over the more powerful Series X for only a 50% increase in capacity.
Due to the Xbox Velocity Architecture of the next-generation systems, games built or optimized for them must run off either the built-in storage or this expansion card, for which there is currently only a 1TB option. With only one expansion slot on both the Series X and S, that means the systems will cap out at 2TB and 1.5TB of playable storage, respectively.
Currently, Seagate is the only storage manufacturer that offers an option compatible with the system.
External USB drives can be plugged into the Xbox for additional capacity, but players will need to transfer games from those drives to the faster PCIe 4.0 NVMe based internal drive or expansion card. Games that aren’t being optimized for the next-gen consoles will be playable off of any USB external drive.
It won’t take many games to fill up the base storage on either console, although Microsoft has said games optimized for Series S could be up to 30% smaller than their Series X iterations, thanks to texture packages being reduced to 1440p vs 4K. Still, with half the capacity, the Series S will likely fill up quicker than a Series X, even with those reduced install sizes.
Extra storage is an option both next-gen consoles are presenting.
On the PlayStation 5, Sony has promised that players will be able to purchase a wider selection of third-party options for their system in order to expand the storage, although this will also need to be of the new PCIe 4.0 NVMe variety.
As it currently stands, most drives that feature this new architecture are currently priced in line with the expansion card for the Series X and S, with many of the 1TB variety priced over $200. However, drive prices quickly fall as new types are designed and manufactured, so it will be interesting to see how long the Xbox expansion card remains at $220.