In a recent podcast held on the PAX Prime convention grounds, Xbox’s Larry “Major Nelson” Hryb stated that the Xbox One will not support external hard drives when it launches later this year.
The Xbox One will ship with a 500GB hard drive, all of them have that. The future plan is definitely to support external storage, much like we do on the Xbox 360. My understanding is that feature won’t be there at launch because the team’s working on other things. It’s definitely on the list, but I don’t know when it’ll come in though.
This is bad news for Microsoft. Currently, their Xbox One system can only support the native internal hard drive that each console ships with when you purchase it at stores. You could have then used an external hard drive to download and store additional content beyond the 500 GB console limit. Now it seems, for the time being, that when you purchase an Xbox One at or near launch there are no other means to increase gaming storage other than USB flash drives, which are very small in comparison.
It seems that it’s not only the Xbox One that is having problems with supporting hard drives. Over the weekend a fan asked Sony Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida about the limits of the PlayStation 4’s hard drive support.
— Shuhei Yoshida (@yosp) August 31, 2013
It seems like the PS4 will support external hard drives for storage purposes, but cannot act as a main hard drive for installed games. They must be kept on the PlayStation 4’s main internal hard drive for the games to run, but you can always upgrade the internal hard drive to something larger or transfer out multimedia and saved game data on an external hard drive or USB flash drive, giving you at least two options.
Either way, it seems that both Microsoft and Sony’s next-gen consoles are failing to deliver on the grandiose expectations that they brought for themselves when each respective company announced their new consoles. It’s just a shame for those who pre-order either an Xbox One or a PlayStation 4 that they are getting less and less of a console than what they thought when they put their money down.