Microsoft released a blog post yesterday about the Xbox one in response to the hue and cry over a few of the features of their next console. The internet is abuzz with talk of it now, claiming that Microsoft has caved or back peddled. And they have done a 180 on two of the most controversial parts of the new console.
First they have removed the need for the console to be connected to the internet to play offline games. This was I suppose in part a way for them to make sure no one is moding their box or playing pirated games. A lot of people crowed about this but really it was going to hurt the customers in parts of the country where reliable high speed internet is A) expensive, or B) not available. There was also something creepy about a device sitting in your living room with a camera and microphone that are always on plugged into the internet (although from what I can tell that will still be the case if you have an always on high speed internet connection.
Secondly they are making it so you can share games again. The previous incarnation of the system would have meant even if you bought the physical disk, if it had been registered to another system you could not use it without paying a relicensing fee.
For me this feels like too little too late, what Microsoft has done is taken the two biggest complaints people had about the system and reversed their position. What’s more is it seems to me they would not have even done that if Sony had not come out with its announcement and essentially said “all those things you think are wrong we are not doing…..and its $100 less”. The five of you who have read my blogs before know that I am not a huge fan of Microsoft; however I’ve been an Xbox owner since the first generation, I’ve enjoyed the games, and the technology. But unless I see something dramatic, a killer app, some new feature that I can’t live without, the 360 will be my last Xbox.