Microsoft announces removal of Xbox One DRM restrictions today

Rumors were flying around today that Microsoft was going to backpedal and announce revisions to their Xbox One DRM policy later today. First reported by and then Giant Bomb, the changes are to be as follows:

  • Always online requirement will be dropped.
  • 24-hour check ins will be dropped, meaning online authentication of games will no longer be necessary.
  • All game discs will work on the Xbox One just as it did on the Xbox 360.
  • All downloadable Xbox One games will be available both online and offline.
  • An internet connection will be required to set up the Xbox One.
  • Restrictions with trading or loaning games will be removed.
  • Region locks will be removed.

A link from the original Xbox One DRM FAQ on Xbox News from several weeks ago link to an article that, as of this writing, is not live yet. The following text was added to said post as well as the link to the update.

Update on June 19, 2013: As a result of feedback from the Xbox community, we have changed certain policies for Xbox One reflected in this blog. Some of this information is no longer accurate — please check here for the latest.

Update: Here’s an excerpt from the page, written by Don Mattrick himself, which just went live a few seconds ago.

Today I am announcing the following changes to Xbox One and how you can play, share, lend, and resell your games exactly as you do today on Xbox 360. Here is what that means:

  • An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games– After a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24 hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.
  • Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today – There will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.

In addition to buying a disc from a retailer, you can also download games from Xbox Live on day of release. If you choose to download your games, you will be able to play them offline just like you do today. Xbox One games will be playable on any Xbox One console — there will be no regional restrictions.

These changes will impact some of the scenarios we previously announced for Xbox One. The sharing of games will work as it does today, you will simply share the disc. Downloaded titles cannot be shared or resold. Also, similar to today, playing disc based games will require that the disc be in the tray.

We appreciate your passion, support and willingness to challenge the assumptions of digital licensing and connectivity. While we believe that the majority of people will play games online and access the cloud for both games and entertainment, we will give consumers the choice of both physical and digital content. We have listened and we have heard loud and clear from your feedback that you want the best of both worlds.

Thank you again for your candid feedback. Our team remains committed to listening, taking feedback and delivering a great product for you later this year.

To be perfectly clear, the Xbox One still remains at $499 as announced and the Kinect functionality remains as outlined in the weeks prior. We have a speculative article positing as to how Microsoft found themselves in the position they’re in for their next generation hardware here for those interested.

Will this policy change convince you to buy a Xbox One console? Please share your thoughts and opinions on this below this article!


0 thoughts on “Microsoft announces removal of Xbox One DRM restrictions today

  1. All I can really say to this is… lol. But.. good for microsoft for recognizing that bad ideas can cost them money.


  2. This is good news, now I’m more open to getting an Xbox One in the future. For now though I’ve already made my decision and that is to get the cheaper and more powerful console.


  3. I think this is just Microsoft cutting off the bleeding that’s happening from all the negative press that their platform’s had over the past several months. It’s smart of them to do this, given that a lot of the talking points will no longer be focused on the DRM discussion, but rather the value proposition of each platform.

    To be quite frank, I’m waiting for Microsoft to create a 2nd SKU for the Xbox One that completely removes the TV functionality of the platform to compete with the PS4 at $399. Here’s hoping this actually happens.


    1. Isn’t the TV functionality just an HDMI port and software? I thought it was just passthrough for use with your own cable box. They wouldn’t save enough to warrant fragmenting the platform over that change if it really is just passthrough and software. Passthrough is nice for things other than TV! (also hi!)


  4. Years from now, there will be many stories told about this brief moment in video game history. Insider tales of what went on behind the scenes. I await those days.

    Some will ask if Microsoft was too far ahead of their time. What I can tell you is that even with this, PS4 has the feature-set and indie support I care about more.


  5. Hrm, I was planning on buying a PS4 before E3, I considered investing in an Xbox, so I would have more access to games on both platforms, but all the bits about the one made me shy away from that idea. I then considered in just getting an Xbox 360 (since I only have PS3 right now) ..

    I will consider it .. but not before I get my PS4.


  6. I wish they had realized how bad the blowback would be on the original system’s design and came up with a more middle ground type of solution. It would have been nice to rip disks to the console and never use them again, I hate disks. But they shouldn’t have also trampled used/trading of games – even if the only way they had of doing the permanent rip was to somehow destroy your copy of the disk (I bet a blu ray burning laser could double as a disk killer on regular factory disks), they could have come up with a “use disk” mode where it rips without permanent authorization and doesn’t destroy it, with a trade in program for “spent” disks linked to the authorization on your account (Microsoft already has a disk exchange program for scratched games, so you can get a cheap replacement without paying for the IP again). Then you can use it like normal if you want or “burn it” to rip all of the disk to the console and kill the disk, with a $3 swap fee where microsoft will send you a replacement if you deauthorize your digital copy. Then it would be like a normal disk forever unless you chose to rip it.

    I really wish they’d done that instead of ORWELL!!! and then back into hiding.


  7. Good for Microsoft, I really don’t see any benefits putting DRM on the XBoxOne80, with that said, I still will not get a XBoxOne80. I’m going to stick to PS4 and Sony, I prefer their exclusive than XBoxOne80’s exclusive games.

    Another interesting tidbit about the situation, I heard this from Colin Moriaty, he said that apparently there a coincidence when a console company make their 3rd hardware. The N64 didn’t do well, it was late in the competition and backfired when they decided to stick with cartridge. PS3 was a deus-ex machina type machine with the cell processor and putting features that wasn’t really useful that made it cost to $600. Now the XBoxOne80 with all it’s problem.


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