Microsoft is making a major U-turn today by reversing some of its controversial Xbox One policies. In a statement on the company's Xbox blog, Microsoft says it's making policy changes "as a result of feedback from the Xbox community." Microsoft is reversing a 24-hour online check, noting that it 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," says a Microsoft statement.
Microsoft is also reversing its used game policy, noting there will be no limitations to using and sharing games. "It will work just as it does today on Xbox 360." Microsoft previously revealed it would support installing games to HDD from disc, without a requirement for the disc, but the changes mean that the disc will now be required to be in the tray for the game to work. "Downloaded titles cannot be shared or resold," says Microsoft, which means a 10-person family sharing feature has been killed off. Regional restrictions are also being removed, allowing consumers to buy a disc from a retailer and play it on any Xbox One console.
The U-turn is a significant change in policy for Microsoft, and it follows initial confusion over its policies and the restrictions gaining mainstream attention this week. Microsoft is clearly reacting to Sony's own E3 announcements, hoping to repair some of the damage over the confusing and controversial aspects to its next-generation console.