What just happened? Pour one out for the Xbox One. Microsoft has just confirmed that it discontinued the Xbox One S at the end of 2020, having previously said it stopped manufacturing the other Xbox One versions earlier that same year.
With the all-new Xbox Series X/S on the horizon, Microsoft announced in July 2020 that it was discontinuing the Xbox One X and the all-digital Xbox One S, leaving only the standard version of the Xbox One S (with the disc drive) as the sole remaining previous-gen Microsoft console still in production.
Now, however, Cindy Walker, senior director of Xbox console product marketing, has told The Verge that "to focus on production of Xbox Series X / S, we stopped production for all Xbox One consoles by the end of 2020."
All that's left now is for retailers to sell whatever remaining Xbox One X/S stock they have left. After that point, their sale will likely be restricted to second-hand stores and auction sites.
Confirmation that the entire Xbox One line is no longer in production comes the day after Sony reportedly decided to continue manufacturing the PlayStation 4 in response to the shortage of PS5s. The company was supposed to end PS4 production either late last year or in 2022, but instead opted to increase output to meet the demand from gamers unable to get hold of a current-gen machine.
While both the PS5 and Xbox Series X are out of stock at most retailers, Microsoft's less powerful Xbox Series S has been a lot easier to come by. Since the latest Xbox consoles went on sale, the Xbox Series S has outperformed the Xbox Series X in "several key markets," with an estimated 50/50 split in terms of install base across major territories.
Head of Xbox Phil Spencer explained one of the reasons why the Xbox Series S is in more plentiful supply: "We can actually build more of the Series S [chips] in the same [chip] die space as we can the Series X," he said. Microsoft also claims that the Xbox Series X/S systems are selling faster than any previous generation of its consoles.