Xbox:: The History Of The Controller

Sahas Dahal
3 min readJan 10, 2021

The third iteration of the Xbox 360 controller came bundled with the 360 S console and while having an identical layout to the two that came before it, this controller was all one colour and featured colour-matched analog sticks and D-pad alongside a mirror-like finish on the central guide button to match the design of the new console.

Maintaining the overall 360 controller layout, the first iteration of the Xbox One controller made some minor tweaks to the design to enhance gameplay for users, including redesigning the grips, eliminated the protruding battery pack, changing the 8-way D-pad to a 4-way D-pad, smoother rims on the analog sticks and a more ergonomic bumper and trigger buttons.

As well as the visual design changes, Microsoft also added light emitters to the Xbox One controller to allow it to be automatically paired with Kinect devices and added sensors that automatically detected when the controller was not being held so it could enter a power-saving mode automatically.

A revised version of the original Xbox One controller was introduced in 2015 and featured the addition of a 3.5mm audio jack and wireless firmware update support.

Designed for pro gamers, the Xbox One Elite controller was a black and silver-colored device of steel construction topped with soft-touch plastic “skin”. As well as interchangeable D-pad and analog sticks, this upgraded controller also featured “hair-trigger locks” and the ability to customize sensitivity and mapping using the software.

A special Gears of War edition in red with blood splatter effect was released in 2016.

With very little difference to the original Xbox One controllers, this device was bundled with the upgraded Xbox One S consoles and are in all one texture and color, have textured grips, and are Bluetooth enabled, allowing users an alternative to the wireless adapter while using with PC.

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