Microsoft explains why Xbox Series X controller uses AA batteries

By Sherif Saed, Tuesday, 31 March 2020 12:28 GMT

Microsoft has yet again elected to go a certain way when deciding on how the Xbox Series X controller will be powered.

When working on refining the Xbox controller design for Xbox Series X, Microsoft decided to once again rely on AA batteries to power the controller, rather than rechargeable batteries.

This decision was particularly shocking for some. In part because they see the controller’s lack of a built-in rechargeable battery as its only downside, but also because Microsoft itself add a rechargeable battery to the revised Elite Controller 2.

It turns out, that aspect was heavily discussed during development, but the design team ultimately felt the current design offers the most flexibility.

“What it comes down to is when actually talking to gamers, it’s kind of polarising and there is a strong camp that really want AAs,” Jason Ronald, partner director of program management at Xbox, explained to Digital Foundry.

“So just giving flexibility is the way to please both [sets of] people… You can use a rechargeable battery pack and it works just like it does on the Elite, [but] it is a separate thing.”

This decision isn’t particularly surprising, especially given how Ronald practically provides the same reason behind the decision to eschew rechargeable batteries all the way back in the Xbox 360 days.

For a round-up of all confirmed Xbox Series X details so far, including spec comparison with PS5, hit the links.

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