Microsoft unveils Xbox One in Washington

Microsoft has unveiled its next generation video games console, Xbox One.

After rumours, speculation and much excitement - Microsoft has unveiled Xbox One.

Xbox Launch 4

The next generation games console features a new Kinect camera sensor and can be controlled through voice and motion.

Microsoft is calling it "the ultimate all-in-one home entertainment system". It is to be released globally later this year.

Xbox One - all-in-one entertainment hub

Launched at an event at Microsoft Campus in Redmond, Washington, the Xbox One goes beyond gaming to become a fully blown living room entertainment hub, combining live TV, games, film and music.

The live event was streamed across the globe, with gamers all over the world logging on to find out more.

Don Mattrick, president of the interactive entertainment business at Microsoft, told the audience and those at home: "Today we put you at the centre of a new generation in the living room - where your games look and feel like nothing else, where your TV becomes more intelligent, where all of your entertainment comes alive in one place.

"Team Xbox is on a new mission - design and build an all-in-one system to light up a new generation of games, TV and entertainment."

New Kinect gives greater control

The new device also boasts a new gamepad and blu-ray drive, while the Kinect camera sensor is set to give gamers more accurate control over characters in the virtual world.

But the Kinect isn't merely set to revolutionise how people play games. In line with the entertainment hub mantra, the sensor is set to improve access to other entertainment functions.

Microsoft cited the example of working out, saying "when you're exercising, it can read your heartbeat".

Record gameplay, chat on Skype

Gamers will also be able to record their finest game-play moments and share with friends online, while different feedback will be programmed into the new controller's trigger buttons, with the feedback dependent on the genre of game being played.  

As well as playing games and watching TV, people will also be able to chat with friends via Skype.

Fred Huet from research firm Greenwich Consulting told the BBC: "The integration of voice and gesture control with social features and real-time sharing are crucial and create the opportunity for consumers to have a complete entertainment hub of which Xbox is the epicentre."

Xbox One Launch

But what about the games

But aside from all the other features, the world first fell for the Xbox for its games - and the Xbox One has plenty to keep us swooning.

The firm revealed that 15 exclusive games, including eight new franchises, will be available on Xbox One within the first 12 months.

There had been much speculation about the appearance of the new Call of Duty game during the Redmond event, and it didn't disappoint, with Activision's Call of Duty: Ghosts delivered as the final kiss-off of the presentation.

Gamers can look forward to seeing bruises on skin, dirt beneath fingernails and hairy arms on the new COD thanks to the improved graphics of Xbox One.

EA sports also announced a host of titles at the Redmond launch event, with Fifa 14, Madden 25 and NBA Live 14 all set to make an appearance. The titles, which also include UFC, will utilise a newly revealed gaming engine called Ignite.

Meanwhile, film director Steven Spielberg announced a live-action television series of the video game franchise Halo via video link.

More to come at E3 in June; register interest for Xbox One updates here

There will be much more on games at gaming expo E3 in June, with Microsoft set to deliver part two of this launch the day before the event gets under way.

Xbox One is the successor to the hugely successful Xbox 360 which sold a reported 77 million consoles around the world.

The Xbox one preview follows the announcement of Sony's PS4 - although we didn't actually see the new Sony console at the February launch in New York.

Now we've told you all about the Xbox One you can register your interest for more details here.