The Xbox One is a black, shiny box that is elegant at best or utilitarian at worst. It's not the flashiest console we've ever seen that title goes to the Coleco Telstar Arcade but it's an improvement from the 360 and there's really not much to that one couldn't like about its looks. Or so I thought, until I became jealous of my friends that work at Microsoft Microsoft, as it appears that those who are full time employees in the Interactive Entertainment Business group will reportedly receive a free custom black-on-white edition of the console when it launches later this year.
This white Xbox One has the same internals as the one we plebs will have access to, yet its paint job is far more attractive. Besides the console itself being white, it comes with a white controller and a small engraving on the front that states, "I made this," which is exceptionally cool. The Kinect is black.
The move is a clearly a way to reward a team that's reportedly been under immense stress to not just ship a next-gen console on schedule, but to ensure that the console is something that people will adopt as a centerpiece to their living rooms, even if it costs $100 more than Sony's offering. While it's still far too early if the second goal will be achieved, it's clear that the first has been.
In addition to celebrating month after month of hard work, the hardware giveaway can serve to engender some goowill within a company that has just learned that it's losing its long-time CEO, Steve Ballmer. Reactions here in Seattle have been mixed, with most as seeing Ballmer's retirement as something that should have happened years ago, though the man does have his defenders, but that's the stuff for another article altogether.
I asked Microsoft if, by any chance, the white Xbox Ones may eventually be available to the general public, but was met with a short but official, "we have no comment". When asked the question on Reddit, where the white Xbox One was first leaked, Xbox community celeb Major Nelson said, "maybe waaaay in the future." Take from that what you will, gentle reader.