Microsoft is kicking things up a notch when it comes to audio fidelity. The company announced yesterday that Dolby Atmos support is coming to Xbox One and Windows 10 next year.
The launch of Dolby Atmos on Xbox One will make it the first console ever to feature Dolby’s high quality surround sound, easily capable of rivalling some of the best surround options available on PS4 including the upcoming PS4 Platinum Wireless headset.
Dolby Atmos can be virtualized to work on all sorts of headsets and speaker systems, at the cost of quality, as Blizzard has demonstrated with their inclusion of Atmos in Overwatch. However, to fully experience the amazing directional sound quality, a Dolby Atmos enabled speaker system or soundbar will be required.
Additionally, there are some high quality gaming headsets available for PC which can provide the Dolby Atmos sound but the feature will be lost when connecting to Xbox One.
Mike Ybarra, who had previously mentioned the arrival of Atmos and is the head of platform engineering at Xbox said:
At Team Xbox, we are all gamers first, and bringing Dolby Atmos support to Xbox One and Windows 10 gaming next year will bring you even further inside the action and sound of your favorite titles.
While Atmos enabled content might still be limited, its growing popularity has ensured more games and even movies have started to adopt Dolby Atmos surround. EA’s latest FPS, Battlefield 1 has Atmos support on PC and the surround option is also really popular in movie theaters now.
Microsoft also announced that Blu-ray Bitstream pass-through will be rolling out to Xbox Preview members soon for Xbox One and Xbox One S. This will allow the consoles to pass Blu-ray audio untouched to the external audio equipment, including Dolby Atmos enabled devices.
The option will however require users to have HDMI connection to a compatible audio receiver.
There is no word on the exact date of the availability of this feature or whether previously released content like Gears of War 4 will have Atmos support or not.