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The Xbox One, Designed for the Global Living Room

Xbox One: Behind the Scenes at Microsoft.

Video interview with Scott Dallmeyer, senior industrial designer of the Xbox One. (Maker Tip: if you’re looking for design inspiration, Scott shows off his great taste on Pinterest.)

Scott explains that the design concept of the Xbox One is to blend in with the living room. While previous versions were a prominent vertical icon, the new version is meant to be seamless–quietly confident and capable.

This means developing a deliberate and cohesive design language, which included years of prototyping and testing versions of the console, Kinect sensor, and controller. There’s even a testing house in Bellevue, Washington with four distinct rooms–European, Asian, US and US dorm room–to determine whether the Xbox One truly integrates in various scenarios.

The final test: noise. Both the Xbox One and the Kinect were measured for noise emission in Microsoft’s anechoic chamber. The room is completely decoupled from the surrounding building to achieve acoustic isolation, and is one of the quietest places on the planet.

The Xbox One Design Process

The team considered nearly 200 versions of the controller before settling on the final one.
The team considered nearly 200 versions of the controller before settling on the final one.
Some early versions of the Kinect sensor.
Some early versions of the Kinect sensor.

Some early versions of the Kinect sensor.

Countless color studies before determining the final four.
Countless color studies before determining the final four.
Deconstructed. The inside of the new Xbox One.
Deconstructed: inside of the Xbox One.

The new Kinect sensor’s inner workings.

Stress testing.
It takes at least 2 million button presses to break the controller.

It takes at least 2 million button presses to break the controller.

Noise testing in Microsoft's anechoic chamber.
Noise testing in Microsoft’s anechoic chamber.

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Learn more about Xbox One at xbox.com.

 Photos by Ariel Zambelich/Wired.