When Microsoft did an about-face on its Xbox One connection and game sharing policies, a few cool features were seemingly left behind. But Xbox One chief product officer Marc Whitten told IGN that it wasn't an all-or-nothing situation.
"I see people feeling like we’ve moved away from digital, when certainly I don’t believe that’s the case," Whitten said. "I believe we’ve added on choice for people. It was an addition of a feature onto Xbox One, not a removal of a feature. And I understand people see things like family sharing and they’re like, ‘Wow, I was really looking forward to that,’ which is more of an engineering reality time frame type-thing.”
Family sharing would allow a user to pool games and other media with up to ten linked accounts, with some limitations. If enough folks (like the 25,000 that filled out this petition) are excited for it, Whitten said Microsoft will find "the right way" to bring the system back.
“We took some feedback and realized there was some stuff we needed to add to the program. To add it to the program, we had to make room, just from a pure engineering perspective, to be able to get that work done. So taking family sharing out of the launch window was not about ‘we’re going to take our toys and go home’ or something like that. It was just sort of the logistics of ‘how do we get this very, very clear request that people really want, that choice, and how do we make sure we can do an excellent job of that, get to launch, and then be able to build a bunch of great features?'"
He's proud of Xbox One's launch, but Whitten wishes he could go back and have more open communication with the demographic that drove Xbox's success in the first place.
"I think the key for us is, we love core gamers. They’re the people that have built Xbox and Xbox Live. That’s the place where we need to do a better job showing up, and we need to engage more."