Microsoft: Imported Xbox Ones will work

Games are region free, but any payments will need to be in launch market currency

Microsoft's Albert Penello, who leads planning for Xbox One, Xbox 360 and Kinect, has explained the reasons behind the recent Xbox One release delay for selected markets, and highlighted some of the issues those planning to import consoles might face.

"Launch volumes are not really an issue," he said of the delay on NeoGaf.

"This was simply a software issue in terms of getting local language and voice support in the dash. it's pretty straightforward, but disappointing I know for people who are missing launch. Obviously, I support people waiting for the official supported launch in the affected markets for the best experience."

He then went on to explain that the Xbox One games are region free, and the console can be used freely in different countries.

"First - all games are WW signed. Not all 360 games are. Second - The console will work everywhere (keeping in mind power supplies)."

"You can use one of the 13 digital marketplaces corresponding to our launch markets, assuming you have a valid payment instrument for those countries. Lots of people in Europe specifically travel, move, and visit family."

He suggested pre-paid cards could help avoid any problems.

He also warned that certain licensed content, music or video, Netflix, would only work in certain countries.

Microsoft announced that the console would be delayed in eight markets earlier this week, with Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland all facing a wait for their machines.

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Latest comments (6)

Paul Jace Merchandiser 5 years ago
You had me at "region free".
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Patrick Frost QA Project Monitor 5 years ago
He said the games are region free but I bet you that doesn't include services from third parties. I'd bet Ubi and EA would chop their servers into regions and your console will dictate which region you get put into.

In short, early adopters that import are likely to find games stopping them from match making with people in their own region at some point.
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Keldon Alleyne Strategic keyboard basher, Avasopht Ltd5 years ago
The console is not region free. The limitation is that an XBone purchased in the Eurozone requires Euros for online purchases, so you couldn't use Swedish Krona with your German XBone.

Their mention of region free is as good as useless in my opinion if that is the case.
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Rogier Voet IT Consultant 5 years ago
Maybe I sound a bit harsh but great companies use marketing to drive demand and smart contracts to make sure that demand is met.

Microsoft did a very poor job promoting the Xbox One and now they cannot even supply all countries with enough Xbox One-consoles? So that is like double Failure? Maybe MS should focus on the US only because they only seem to care if it works there anyway /Sarcasm
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
Whilst I am happy to rag on how MS have handled things, and after two generations of Xbox and a WP7, I am leaning towards Sony (both PS4 and the waterproof phone), this particular thing should be put in context.
Sony have never had a worldwide launch. Usually in Europe we wait a 9-12 months after the Japanese launch, and 6-9 months after the US launch. The Vita was supposed to be a small launch window, but last minute supply chain issues meant we saw delays of months. Nintendo may not have been as long, but there has still been gaps.
The 360 launched a in Europe one week after the US, Japan two weeks later, Australia just after that. So if this seems bad, it is only because Xbox managed last time.
If Sony do manage a worldwide launch, yes it will go in their favour, but we could still hear that the PS4 is delayed in the whole of Europe.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Andrew Goodchild on 19th August 2013 7:18am

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Paul Jace Merchandiser 5 years ago
The console is not region free
I've been buying imports for game consoles since the PS1 days and the definition of "region free" consoles has always been that the system can play games from any region and are thus not region locked. The 3DO and PS3 were region free, the Xbox and Nes were not. From the article:
He then went on to explain that the Xbox One games are region free, and the console can be used freely in different countries.

"First - all games are WW signed. Not all 360 games are. Second - The console will work everywhere (keeping in mind power supplies)."
So yes the Xbox One will be region free. My US one will be able to play PAL games from the UK and NTSC-J games from Japan right out of the box.
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