In a blog post, Xbox director of program management Jason Ronald said players will be able to unplug their existing external USB 3.1 HDD or SSD from their Xbox One and connect it to Xbox Series X/S and play of all of their current-gen games.
Players will also be able to use USB 3.1 storage to house next-gen games for transfer and play on Series X/S.
But existing USB 3.1 storage options can’t be used to play games optimised for Xbox Series X/S and won’t replicate the speed and performance of the next-gen internal SSD. These features will require a Seagate expansion card.
“You can play directly from the Storage Expansion Card and you will have the exact same experience and performance as if the game was running from the internal SSD,” Ronald said.
“Not only does this apply to games optimized for Xbox Series X|S, but also your favorite backwards compatible Xbox One, Xbox 360 and original Xbox games. When backwards compatible games are played directly from either the internal SSD or the Storage Expansion Card you will see significant improvements in load times due to the next generation performance of Xbox Series X|S.”
Ronald was also asked to explain why 1TB storage expansion cards cost $220.
“The Xbox Velocity Architecture is a key innovation of our next generation consoles, delivering unprecedented speed and performance enabling transformative gaming experiences never before possible on console,” he responded. “This level of consistent, sustained performance requires advanced components which comes at a higher cost than traditional hard drives or SSDs often found in PCs.
“By partnering with an industry leader in Seagate, we worked together to deliver an expandable storage solution which delivers identical performance at the lowest cost possible and available this holiday.”