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Plan to use retail Xbox Ones as dev kits scrapped - Report

Plan to use retail Xbox Ones as dev kits scrapped - Report

Wed 09 Jul 2014 5:31pm GMT / 1:31pm EDT / 10:31am PDT
HardwareDevelopment

[UPDATE] Xbox's Martin Fuller says there are no plans to bring that feature out in the future; Microsoft calls remarks "inaccurate"

Microsoft has apparently abandoned its plan to let developers use retail Xbox One units as dev kits. According to a Digital Spy report, Xbox Advanced Technology Group's Martin Fuller broke the news at the Develop conference earlier today.

"We were in the early stages of Xbox One looking at the idea of a retail kit that could be turned into a development kit, and vice versa," Fuller said. "In the end, although that was a very admirable goal, it hasn't happened unfortunately. Can't tell you the specifics of exactly why not."

When pressed for details, Fuller said he wasn't aware of any plans to implement the feature at later date, or even "why we didn't manage to do that."

Despite the news, Microsoft still wants to keep the cost of creating on its platform down for indie developers. Studios new to the ID@Xbox program receive two free developer kits.

ID@Xbox director Chris Charla didn't address the issue yesterday during his "State of the Union" session on the program at the pre-Develop Evolve conference. However, when asked for an update on the retail dev kit plan in that session, Charla told the audience it was still in the works.

[UPDATE]: Microsoft has provided a statement about Fuller's remarks to Kotaku, saying "The comments today were inaccurate. We remain committed to ensuring the best possible solution for developers and hobbyists to create games for Xbox One. We will share more details at a later date."

3 Comments

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

378 227 0.6
As Christian brought up yesterday, there's a lot of security risks in this. Undoubtedly the first step is licking Hobbyists down to the App side, and probably forcing them to work off an external drive of some kind, leaving the main drive idle, and the six cores disabled. With the heavy isolation already in place, this should make things easier, but since they've soent the last year rewriting everything, this little used feature is backburnered.

Net Yaroze was, for it's price tag a pretty big hit, and not just because it was region free. The idea that tech companies can write their own support apps easily to integrate their smart devices with X1 is pretty appealing.

Posted:4 months ago

#1

Steve Wetz Reviewer/Assistant Editor, Gamer's Glance

213 529 2.5
Considering the frequency with which such systems are broken, this choice doesn't make much sense to me. Isolating portions of the device is all good and well for as long as it lasts - wait too long and the second some <insert lesser populated European country here> teenager finds his way in, all bets are off. The way I see it, Microsoft can have the hobbyists in the walled garden they want them in, or people will lose patience and find their way into the entire device, like the Playstation 3 was hacked after they removed Linux support (thereby incurring the homebrew scene wrath that resulted in the hack).

I am not saying that releasing a walled garden for hobbyists will prevent a hack - there will always be a demographic who believes that once they own a physical device, they are free to do with it what they wish, regardless of terms and conditions. But a developer console app keeps everyone but that demographic happy and where you want them.

Posted:4 months ago

#2

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing

378 227 0.6
The pirates are going to try to break it regardless. Whether or not this feature is enabled will make no difference

It's not a factor that really affects sales.

Ifrom what I've been told, both X1 and PS4 can completely change the locks when it happens, and they also gave the games missing pieces that require system updates to "complete the puzzle' and run.

Any person who wants to do this in the meantime should start by getting the Windows 8 App Store kits. It's essentially the same if you're looking to train up. ID@Xbox already provides a solid base for small Dems to get into it, two free dev kits if you apply and are accepted. So really, there's a plethora of options for those coders.

Posted:4 months ago

#3

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