Selling Xbox One as is 'would be difficult,' Microsoft Japan CEO says

Microsoft Japan may make some changes before it tries to sell Xbox One to its country's consumers. An interview from 4gamer translated by Edge indicates the company is being deliberate in launching the console, and as such it will release after regions like North America and Europe.

Why do they need the extra time? Other than pressure to improve on Xbox 360's poor market share in Japan, the Xbox One just wasn't made to appeal to Japanese, said Yasuyuki Higuchi, president and CEO of Microsoft Japan; his company may need to fix that.

“(Xbox One) is geared towards a Western lifestyle, and we’re looking at whether or not to launch it ‘as is’ in Japan,” said Higuchi. “We’re still figuring out how to deal with things like music and video services in each country. To be honest, (releasing it in Japan) as is would be difficult.”

Whereas Xbox One is positioned as an all-in-one entertainment solution for gamers and more in the West, 4gamer noted that Japanese Xbox owners are almost exclusively hardcore gamers. Many of them keep their consoles in their bedrooms--negating the living room entertainment system appeal. Higuchi also mentioned people migrating to tablets and smartphones instead of consoles as a concern.

“We have to prepare content that is relevant to Japan," said Haruaki Kayama, head of Microsoft Japan's Consumer & Partner Group. ‘What is the best, what will today’s consumers in Japan respond to? What content is in demand?’ We’re considering these questions now. There’s no point in a solution that does not match the market. Even if we bring NFL (on board for Japan), haha… Japan is difficult. I’m almost tempted to ask for ideas.”

Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.