Xbox One controller nearly had a built-in screen


Whilst we’re now accustomed to the Wii U GamePad providing a unique second screen experience, it has emerged that Microsoft toyed with the idea themselves with Xbox One.

Microsoft’s head of Xbox accessories, Zulfi Alam, revealed that the company experimented with prototypes that emitted smells in an attempt to further immerse players, used soft-touch materials, and even incorporated an internal speaker. Each idea being abandoned during development.

“We did put screens on our controllers,” Alam explained to Kotaku. “These are the two things that came out… the gaming screen is essentially your television screen. If you have a small alternate screen which can’t by definition be high-res or super bright because of the battery requirements — it would drain the battery much faster than you wanted to – there would have to be compromises.

“If you had this screen that is on your controller and this big TV in front of you, your eyes are going down to your controller and back up and down and back up and during a shooter or other core gameplay scenario that is just not something you want to be doing. So it just didn’t have the user impact that we desired.”

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