Well....that just happened.
If you've been living under a rock in past few days, let me go ahead and explain the situation that's been spewing out literally everywhere online.
In a discussion between two individuals, Microsoft Studio’s Creative Director, Adam Orth, decided to voice his opinion on 'always-on' devices. Without explicitly attaching his claim to an unannounced next-gen Xbox, the damage was done and the internet mob, with hands held high of torches and pitch-forks, came knocking and assumed the worst.
Now, hear me out. I'm not going to tell anyone what opinion he or she should have formed from such a fallout of epic proportions, but I do have several things of which I'd like to share with you.
In a sea of conflicting rumors, the one rumor that has managed to gain the most and enduring attention is as follows: In a nut-shell, the rumor describes the process by which the next-gen xbox functions. An internet connection, supposedly, is required at all times for the player to have access to his or her game. If the internet goes out, then bam, your xbox is useless (for both multi-player and offline play).
You can see why this is controversial...
Now, let's attempt to assess and reassess the situation. There's always a little reason to be found in situations of madness.
Let's say that you do believe this certain rumor but you want to be completely sure of yourself. Well, nobody can do that until the official reveal, but you can form a good opinion, educated and well-formulated rather than just screaming out "microsoft has lost, ps4thewin."
Not too long ago, Microsoft had announced the sale/shipment of over 75 million Xbox 360 units and over 40 million Xbox Live members, silver and gold. Now, you have to pay a little closer attention to those Xbox Live members in comparison to the total Xbox 360 units sold. If you do the math, that's essentially a 1.875 : 1 ratio (consoles sold to Xbox live members).
Now, that's a pretty significant gap, isn't it? Almost half of Microsoft's Xbox 360's customers aren't Xbox Live members. Breaking that down, you can guess that a good number of the customers don't care to play online or don't have an internet connection- and that's almost HALF of Xbox 360 owners.
Microsoft knows these stats. They tout these numbers all the time and they know this fact. If you truly believe that Microsoft is dead-set on making their next Xbox have the 'always-online' requirement to even just play games, you need to ask yourself something:
Do I think Microsoft, who knows that important ratio I mentioned above, is stupid enough to do something like this and potentially lose approximately half of their customers?
If anything, this 'always-online' feature can have several interpretations, yet we are focusing on just one. The feature could be somewhat similar to Sony PS4's low-power sleep mode or it could be referring to maintaining connection to Xbox Live at all times to avoid logging in everytime you turn it on, even when your Xbox is switched off (as someone earlier pointed out).
The nature of these rumors should also tell you something. None of the rumors exactly matches up to any other given rumor. Either the majority of the rumors are just plain false or the developers who have been given the durango kits are confused on which features constitute as developer-exclusive and which ones may be reserved for consumer units.
Anyways, that's what I wanted to share with everyone. Please, feel free to disagree and comment below.
Thanks for reading and your time.