The price for 1TB of expandable storage on Microsoft’s Xbox Series X and S consoles has finally been revealed and it’s a whopping $219.99.
That’s based on a listing that recently went up over at Best Buy and was first spotted by The Verge. (Update - 11:34 a.m., 9/24/20: Microsoft confirmed the price over on its Xbox blog). Manufactured by Seagate, the proprietary expansion cards come with 1TB of extra SSD storage. Microsoft told The Verge that additional sizes from other suppliers will be available in the future, but it’s unclear if they’ll arrive before the consoles launch on November 10.
The Seagate expansion cards, which at 1.2 inches by 2.0 inches are just a little bit bigger than a standard SD card, load into the rear of the Xbox Series X and S. Unfortunately, they stick out of the back, effectively extending the overall size of the consoles, but otherwise look like they’ll be extremely portable and easy to pop in and out as needed. Just make sure you don’t lose it.
To put cards’ price in perspective, $220 is more than a Switch Lite and only $80 shy of the total price of the Xbox Series S—Microsoft’s cheaper next-gen console that forgoes 4k graphics and has only 512GB of internal SSD storage compared to the Xbox Series X’s 1TB. If you want to upgrade the Series S’s internal storage, you’ll basically have to pay $520—more than the price of an Xbox Series X for a console that doesn’t support 4k.
As I pointed out back during our comparison post when the S was first revealed, 512GB is nothing in today’s digital gaming environment where AAA games can average anywhere between 50 and 100 GB. Microsoft confirmed earlier this year that while existing external hard drives will be compatible with the Series X and S for Xbox One, 360, and Xbox games, next-gen games will only work off of proprietary SSD drives.
There’s been some speculation that next-gen games might be smaller on average than their counterparts on PS4 and Xbox One, and that certainly could be the case for Series S games which won’t be running in 4k. Sony recently revealed that Demon’s Souls Remastered will require 66GB of space on PS5, however, while Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Spider-Man Remastered will each need around 50GB. In other words, I’m not holding my breath for meaningfully smaller file sizes next generation.