Like any other product that has its unveiling looming, various aspects of Microsoft’s next Xbox have been heavily speculated on over the past few months. Of all the rumors, the one that’s gotten the most amount of attention – and deservedly so – is in regards to a requirement for an “Always-on” Internet connection. That is, an Internet connection to do the one thing most owners would want to be doing: play a game (even single player).
This particular rumor has been so heavily talked-about that it seemed almost likely that it was true – especially after a (now former) Microsoft employee mocked those who found something wrong with an “Always-on” scheme. However, according to a memo leaked to Ars Technica, we all have nothing to worry about. It reads:
“Durango is designed to deliver the future of entertainment while engineered to be tolerant of today’s Internet. There are a number of scenarios that our users expect to work without an Internet connection, and those should ‘just work’ regardless of their current connection status. Those include, but are not limited to: playing a Blu-ray disc, watching live TV, and yes playing a single player game.“
The first thing I thought of when I read this was that Microsoft likely did have other plans originally, but changed them due to the huge opposition. Ars commenter flooey puts it perfectly:
“Of course, the existence of such a mass e-mail implies that this is a recent change in policy. My work never sends an e-mail to everyone to say, “Just FYI, the policy we’ve had this whole time is still the policy. Keep doing what you’ve been doing.“
I guess what really matters is that we (seemingly) have nothing to worry about regarding this sort of DRM with the next Xbox.