Microsoft’s New Headphones are Made for (Xbox) Gamers

Microsoft’s New Headphones are Made for (Xbox) Gamers
Screenshot: Microsoft/YouTube

If you’re dying to pick up an Xbox Series X or S but have been out of luck so far, Microsoft has a new device to tide you over. The $149.95 Xbox Wireless Headset, available next month, is a pair of gaming headphones in the style of the new Xbox with a few noteworthy features.

The headphones promise 15 hours of battery life and have a retractable microphone with auto-mute that reduces ambient noise during chat sessions. They also offer spatial sound using the Windows Sonic, Dolby Atmos, and DTS Headphone: X standards. Because the headphones come straight from the Redmond mothership, they work seamlessly with your new Xbox but can be paired with PCs and mobile devices. Microsoft claims you can move the headphones seamlessly from your Xbox to your Windows 10 machine without reconnecting them.

Photo: Microsoft Photo: Microsoft

Gaming headsets have to be light — most of us wear them for hours — and Microsoft promises that these will be comfortable and unobtrusive. These weigh in at 311.84 g, on par with similar gaming headsets.

“We’ve learned that gaming is a deeply social activity. Especially nowadays, given the state of the world, gaming and communicating with others is a critical need. The team took a human-centered approach to design a headset that removes the unnecessary distractions so that players can focus on the game and their friends,” Microsoft senior design researcher Scott Wang said in a statement announcing the new device.

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Given that first-party accessories are usually superior — after all, Microsoft engineers know the ins and outs of the Xbox audio codecs — these low-priced cans might be a good investment. They’re available for preorder now.