Microsoft's Xbox controller wireless adapter for PCs isn't gigantic anymore

Summer's coming to a close, but the Xbox wireless adapter for PCs just debuted its beach body.

Rejoice, all ye who yearn to use Microsoft’s Xbox One controller wirelessly with your PC. Two years after the release of the Xbox One controller wireless adapter, Microsoft has finally found a way to shrink the damn thing down to a normal size.

If you don’t know what I mean, then clearly you never bought the original Xbox One wireless adapter. The tech itself is fine, but there's a caveat: It’s huge. Comically so.

It’s hard to convey here how ridiculous the original wireless adapter looks because, well, it’s just a USB stick. But stick it next to a normal USB drive or whatever and you quickly realize that Microsoft created the combination SUV/limousine of dongles.

Xbox One wireless adapter - original Microsoft

Pictured: The original Xbox One wireless adapter. Not pictured: The 23 people it takes to lift it.

And why? Who knows. Considering I can get a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth adapter that’s about the size of my thumbnail, I can’t imagine what Microsoft’s using its 15-bedroom mansion of a USB stick for. It’s nearly four inches long, almost an inch fat, and actually inserting it in a PC is an ordeal—it doesn’t even fit into the front of my case thanks to a nearby lip, and plugging into the back means blocking a second USB port either above or below.

Microsoft’s slimming down though. The upcoming Xbox One X (formerly Project Scorpio) is worlds smaller than the original Xbox One and its chunky knockoff-VCR aesthetic, and Microsoft apparently figured out how to give its USB dongle the same treatment. The store page claims the new Xbox wireless adapter is “66 percent smaller” than the previous iteration.

If that number sounds meaningless, I’ll put it a different way: It looks like a normal USB stick now, not some electronic chocolate bar.

Xbox One wireless adapter Microsoft

Sweet relief.

Same features, though. Same price too. $25 gets you the dongle, which fully supports up to eight controllers at a time, plus stereo sound. Microsoft’s also trying to get more peripherals to use the Xbox One's proprietary wireless standard, and if that ever comes to pass you’d be able to hook those into the adapter also—though not much progress has been made on that front, far as I can tell.

Look for the new model on August 8 through the Microsoft Store, and presumably through Amazon et al soon after.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Hayden Dingman

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?