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Anorak | Competition from Sony forces Microsoft U-Turns on the Xbox One ‘authorisation’ rip off

Competition from Sony forces Microsoft U-Turns on the Xbox One ‘authorisation’ rip off

by | 20th, June 2013

IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR MICROSOFT - E3 2013 attendees interact with newly announced games and experiences for Xbox One at MicrosoftÂ’s booth at E3 2013 in Los Angeles on Tuesday, June 11, 2013. (Photo by Casey Rodgers/Invision for Microsoft/AP Images)

MICROSOFT has just done a complete u-turn on the terms and conditions under which their new Xbox One will operate. They had been proposing that used games would require “authorisation” to move from one box to another. Obviously, so that hands could be held out for a fee to facilitate this authorisation.

The machine had to dial in over the internet every day for any games at all to keep working. And finally there would be region blocking on games: no buying your stuff cheap off Amazon US and then playing it in more expensive Europe for example.

All of these restrictions have gone and Microsoft says it’s because they’re a really lovely caring sharing and listening company. Complete bollocks of course.

The actual reason is that Sony’s PS4 is coming out for this Christmas season as well. And Sony announced that the PS 4 would have none of those things that everyone hated. Now, think to yourself: if the Sony wasn’t available, would Microsoft have changed their minds whatever the cries of outrage? OK, now, do you think they would have been less likely to change their minds if they didn’t have the competition?

Quite: this is what reduces the ability of companies to screw over the consumer. The existence of competition to the companies’ products. Less competition inevitably means more screwing over. Which is why us free marketeers keep banging on about the necessity for that competition.



Posted: 20th, June 2013 | In: Money, Technology Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink