Microsoft has been having a rough time of it this week at the E3 video-game convention over its policies for the Xbox One, including its restrictions on sharing games and requirements for Internet connectivity.
Don Mattrick, the president of the company’s Interactive Entertainment Business, addressed the online issue during a backstage interview (above) with Geoff Keighley of G4TV, defending the choice to require the Box One to connect to the Internet at least once every 24 hours. Here’s an excerpt.
Mattrick: “I think people are going to love it, and then they’re going to understand what we’re trying to create, and how it links games and entertainment, the functionality of the box. Some of the advantages that you get of having a box that is designed to use an online state, so that to me is the future-proof choice, and I think people could’ve arguably gone the other way if we didn’t do it and fortunately we have a product for people who aren’t able to get some form of connectivity, it’s called Xbox 360.”
Q: “Stick with 360, that’s your message if people don’t like it?”
Mattrick: “Well, if you have zero access to the Internet, that is an offline device. I mean, seriously, when I read the blogs, and thought about who’s really the most impacted, there was a person who said ‘Hey, I’m on a nuclear sub,’ and I don’t even know what it means to be on a nuclear sub but I’ve gotta imagine it’s not easy to get an Internet connection.”
Advantages of Microsoft’s new approach include the ability to play games via the cloud, for example when into your Xbox Live account at a friend’s house. But given the backlash, the company will need to keep demonstrating the value of the approach if it wants to win over hard-core gamers for Xbox One.
The company this week launched a refreshed Xbox 360 and plans to continue supporting the console.