If you’re clicking into this article, chances are you’re in one of two groups: those who are ready to crucify Microsoft, and those who just want people to give it a chance. I happen to fall into the latter category, but that has nothing to do with why this article is being written. Instead, I’m hoping to address those of you who simply refuse to acknowledge how reasonable some of Microsoft’s Xbox One implementations were, and how Sony will soon have to follow suit.
I will admit, Microsoft’s assertion that “every Xbox One owner has a broadband connection” is absurd That simply isn’t true. If you look at the number of Xbox 360s sold (76 million) and the number of Xbox Live subscribers (46 million), chances are good that at least a sizable handful of 360 owners don’t have a stable internet connection.
But with that stretching of the truth came a piece of good news. Providing a veritable cloud library of games has never been pulled off on a scale this large before. Knowing that I can now go to my friend’s house and not suffer when I realize that I left Halo 5 at home. It’s a great, innovative feature that could not have been accomplished had Microsoft not opted everyone into the whole “always online” thing. Combine this with day-one downloads, and I have to say it’s looking good so far.
Yes, the console needs to connect to the Internet at least once every 24 hours, and you have a right to be upset about that. But if you stop and think, how often are you actually without one? Chances are, not often.
Locally speaking, the Xbox One has two wireless adapters. These, of course, help to increase connectivity between your devices, something that only benefits users. Beyond that, the company recommends a broadband connection of only 1.5Mbps, a rather low benchmark for most of us who do have internet access. reliably.
The rumors that surfaced dealing with games being tied to a profile were put to rest as the company confirmed today that your “friends and family, your guests and acquaintances” will all get access to your games as they play on your console. It gets even better as “up to ten members of your family can log in and play from your shared games library on any Xbox One.” What “family” is defined as remains to be seen, but whatever this group is, they’ll be able to play from your shared library at any given time.
Perhaps the most disheartening information revealed today is the power that Microsoft will give to publishers. Not only can these companies now tell you whether or not you can give your game to a friend (once, mind you), they can also decide whether or not you can trade in the games that you own.
Though it sounds like a bummer, publisher power is the most important information announced today. Users may respond to this new world order with a resounding, “Oh no! Publishers will be able to wage war against used games.” Publishers, on the other hand, are saying, “Finally, we can wage war against used games,” which do nothing but dig into their profits.
What many aren’t thinking about is how that will affect Sony’s PlayStation. You’re downright crazy if you think the folks at Sony don’t have to come up with a similar plan soon. If they don’t, publishers will have their way and flock to Microsoft’s Xbox One as it allows them to cut losses and maximize revenue. In the end, that’s what most of this is all about: money, not customer satisfaction. And if Sony wants to win the console war and the money that comes with it, the company is going to have to step on its users’ toes.