Microsoft has hit the reset button over a few controversial features of the new Xbox One.
On Wednesday afternoon Don Mattrick, Microsoft’s president for interactive entertainment business, announced that the company’s new gaming console would not require users to have a broadband connection to play and restrictions on playing used games would be lifted.
Activists warned that such a connection, coupled with the console’s motion-tracking camera and microphone, could be considered a surveillance device. The move also highlighted the alarming state of broadband connection in the U.S.: Only 62 percent of Americans currently have access, according to the FCC.
“You told us how much you loved the flexibility you have today with games delivered on disc,” Mattrick wrote. “The ability to lend, share, and resell these games at your discretion is of incredible importance to you. Also important to you is the freedom to play offline, for any length of time, anywhere in the world. So, today I am announcing the following changes to Xbox One and how you can play, share, lend, and resell your games exactly as you do today on Xbox 360.”
Mattrick also provided the following list of the changes made to the system:
- An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games–After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.
- Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today–There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.
- In addition to buying a disc from a retailer, you can also download games from Xbox Live on day of release. If you choose to download your games, you will be able to play them offline just like you do today. Xbox One games will be playable on any Xbox One console–there will be no regional restrictions.
Xbox One will be released in November.