Microsoft's new Copilot controller functionality promises to make gaming accessible for those who have disabilities or special needs, broadening the Xbox One's player base.
On Tuesday, Microsoft announced a new series of enhanced Xbox One controllers that are “inspired by military technology and performance patterns,” promising increased accuracy and comfort during intense multiplayer matches.
Microsoft’s Tech Series is the latest in a string of revised Xbox One controllers to hit the market in recent months, following up on last year’s paddle-equipped Elite Wireless Controller, which hit retail at a premium price of $150. Last year also saw the launch of color-customizable Design Lab controllers for the Xbox One, which players can build online via a web interface and order for shipment.
Among other features, the upcoming Tech Series Xbox One controller boasts laser-etched designs and a rubberized texture in order to improve player grip.
“In developing this new controller series, the Xbox team was inspired by military technology and performance patterns, exploring concepts stemming from combat armor and sci-fi mechanical gear,” Microsoft said. “Premium finishes like a laser etched texture on the front, gold accents and insignia are on the front of the controller. The back of the controller features textured diamond rubberized grip for added control and comfort.”
Microsoft continues: “This specialized controller also has the same features you know and love of the Xbox Wireless Controller, including improved wireless range and Bluetooth technology for gaming on Windows 10 devices or Samsung Gear VR. You can also take advantage of the custom button-mapping feature through the Xbox Accessories App, available for download from the Xbox Store or Windows Store.”
Tech Series Xbox One controllers are also compatible with Copilot, a feature that will roll out with the launch of the platform’s Creators Update later this year. Copilot mode allows players to bind two Xbox One controllers as a single input device, making a variety of games accessible for players with physical disabilities or mobility impairments.
The Tech Series will make its debut on April 25 with the launch of the Recon Tech Special Edition Xbox Wireless Controller, which will retail for $70.