Following a week of some less than flattering news, Microsoft is geared to hold its annual pre-E3 conference. Unfortunately, instead of announcing something awesome, the tech giant must use this time to address some finicky subjects.
Ideally, this time would have been spent introducing new software. Currently, the Xbox One launch lineup is looking fairly standard and nothing seems to be quite at the level of Halo: Combat Evolved. Instead, they all seem like the Xbox 360 launch lineup, which simply wasn’t as good.
The issues Microsoft will have to address, however, are all conceptions (some false) about their latest console, as illustrated here.
However, before we let a collection of still images designed to emulate video ruin our perception, let it be known that Microsoft has given some answers … which aren’t all that great.
On the always-online front, Microsoft has confirmed that the console will need to connect online once every 24 hours, which isn't necessarily better than "always on," but it does help them deflect some criticism.
With regards to used games, third party publishers will be allowed to decide if they want to make that option available or not. Technically, since most publishers wouldn't want to lose that revenue they might but they wouldn't want the criticism so they might not. Either way, by putting this decision in someone else’s hands, Microsoft is free of all blame. All of it.
With regards to giving games to friends, you can do so … but "you can only give them to people who have been on your friends list for at least 30 days and each game can only be given once." Ouch.
Also, up to ten family members can play games on your console, which is perhaps their way of encouraging smaller families.
As for Kinect, privacy concerns are alleviated because gamers can turn it on or off whenever they wish. Also, any "conversations" with the system will remain offline so no worries about private things being uploaded to the Cloud.
Ultimately, Microsoft seems quite decisive about these announcements but they might be forced to change something, and fast. After all, things were so bad that the company reportedly hired people to make positive remarks about their console on Reddit but, even if that isn't the case, reactions are currently bad.
Either way, this annual pre-E3 show has taken on some serious importance because of the negative publicity revolving around Microsoft’s latest console. Whether it will be enough damage control remains to be seen.