Microsoft dropped some big news during the season premiere of its 'Xbox Inside' show, which it streamed online over the weekend. Towards the end of the show, Larry Hryb (Major Nelson), programming director for Xbox Live, announced that Microsoft was bringing FreeSync support to Xbox One S and Xbox One X game consoles, which will ultimately deliver smooth visuals to gamers.
FreeSync is similar to NVIDIA's G-Sync technology, in that it helps reduce or eliminate screen tearing, stuttering, and artifacting that is often observed even on the highest end systems. It does this by synchronizing the refresh rate of your monitor with your GPU to smooth things out. FreeSync (like G-Sync) is something that really needs to be seen to be fully appreciated, and Xbox will have a chance to do that soon.
The implementation that is rolling out is FreeSync 2. This works the same way as the first version of FreeSync, but adds some other goodies to the equation, most notably high dynamic range (HDR) support. It also introduces tighter standards for a more consistent FreeSync experience across supported monitors. Part of that entails something AMD calls Low Framerate Compensation (LFC), which dictates that the maximum refresh rate must be at least 2.5x the minimum framerate.
You can hear Microsoft and AMD talk a little more about this in the video below (skip to the 1hr38m20s mark):
Microsoft will be rolling out FreeSync support next week to Xbox Insiders in the alpha ring. It requires a compatible display, and presumably will arrive to all Xbox One S and Xbox One X gamers with the Spring Update that is currently in the works.
In addition to FreeSync support, another new feature is an Auto Low Latency Mode. When enabled, this will send a signal to a compatible TV that a game is being played and to turn on its Game Mode, which many TVs have in order to reduce latency. Once a gamer switches to something else, like a Netflix app, the Game Mode will turn off automatically. This is basically a convenience for gamers, as it negates having to go into their TV's settings to enable Game Mode.