Gaming Console 101

Xbox Series X USB Ports Specs Explained

Xbox Series X has an array of ports including a few USB ports. While the rest of the ports, such as the HDMI port, serve a singular function of say display connectivity, USB ports are very versatile.

However, while all USB ports may look the same, they differ tremendously when it comes to their prowess. The exact performance of USB ports depends upon their specs and version to be precise.

In the following text, I will talk about the Xbox Series X USB ports specs and also highlight the devices that can interface with these ports.

In short, though, Xbox Series X has three Type A USB ports and they all conform to the SuperSpeed (5 Gbps) specs.

I will also touch base on how the USB ports on Xbox Series X compare with those on its arch-rival the PS5.

USB Ports On the Xbox Series X

Xbox Series X has a total of three Type-A ports. One on the front and two on the back.

Xbox Series X USB Ports Specs
Two USB Ports on the back. Source: Xbox

Now for starters, you must know that USB ports essentially come in two form factors these days:

  • Type A
  • Type C

Type A vs Type C

There are more types of USB ports, but they are irrelevant to this topic.

Type A is one that you all know about. It has been around for ages. Type-C ports are somewhat newer.

Type C ports are not only smaller and more convenient (since the cable can be inserted either way), but they also, at an average, carry a higher bandwidth and power compared to Type-A ports.

Now the exact amount of data (Gbps) carried by a USB port depends upon what specs or USB TECHNOLOGY it conforms to.

The Different USB Standard / Technologies

Here is a run down on all the different USB technologies or specs:

TechnologyVersion NamesSpeed
High SpeedUSB 2.00.48 Gbps
SuperSpeedUSB 3.0
USB 3.1
USB 3.2 Gen 1
5 Gbps
SuperSpeed+USB 3.1 Gen 2
USB 3.2 Gen 2
10 Gbps
SuperSpeed++USB 3.2 Gen 2x220 Gbps

Now it should be noted that the USB standard is very confusing to understand at first glance. This is because each technology can have many different names.

Take for instance the SuperSpeed technology. This has three different names and depending upon how old your device is, it would have the name that was common at that time.

So for instance a USB 3.0 port found on older consoles and devices would have the speed as the USB 3.2 Gen 1 ports on the newer consoles and devices.

With that said, now we can look into the Xbox Series X USB ports specs.

Xbox Series X USB Ports Specs

Xbox Series X has three USB ports ALL conforming to the SuperSpeed or USB 3.2 Gen 1 protocol.

Meaning they ALL have a transfer speed of 5 Gbps maximum.

As far as the power goes, they can transfer a maximum of 4.5W which is standard for the SuperSpeed Type-A ports.

This is just enough to power up an external hard disk drive.

Other devices that you can connect include a keyboard, a mouse, a USB hub, and of course the controllers themselves.

No USB Type C Port

One of the biggest drawbacks of the USB arrangement on the Xbox Series X is that it ditches the USB Type C port.

This is a bummer since on average, USB C ports carry a higher bandwidth as well as power as compared to Type-A ports.

Implications for Connecting External Storage to the USB Ports

The 5 Gbps transfer speed on Xbox Series X is just 1 Gbps shy of the 6 Gbps (750 MB/s) maximum transfer speed supported by the SATA 3 external hard disks.

Now this has implications, particularly if you wish to connect the newer SSD external storage.

Meaning, while the USB ports on the Xbox Series X are sufficient enough for an external Hard Disk Drive (since they can only practically reach a maximum speed of only about 100-150 MB/s maximum), as well as for SATA SSDs (since they can reach a maximum of 550 MB/s), they are not quite sufficient for newer external hard drives that are designed to leverage on the SuperSpeed+ or the SuperSpeed++ speeds.

Comparing Xbox Series X USB Ports vs PS5 USB Ports

Overall, the USB port arrangement on Xbox Series X is lackluster when you compare it with the arrangement on PS5.

PS5 USB Ports

In comparison to Xbox Series X, PS5 offers 4 X USB ports.

Three of these ports conform to the SuperSpeed+ (10 Gbps) standard.

In addition to that, one of the four ports is also a USB Type C port.

Also Read: How Much RAM Does Xbox Series X Have?

Atif Qazi

Atif Qazi is the founder of and a huge gaming nerd. Thanks to the vast gaming experience under his belt, you can often find him writing detailed pieces of content on gaming hardware and console. But in all honesty, nothing gives him more pleasure than 'one-shotting' everyone as a stealth archer in ESO: Skyrim.

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