The rumors that Microsoft's next Xbox will require an "always-on" internet connection are gathering steam. The Verge has heard that Microsoft is indeed planning the connection requirement for its upcoming console, but this was based on information from last year; however, Kotaku's sources now say that the plan was still in place as recently as two weeks ago.
The next Xbox, codenamed Durango, reportedly won't be able to start software in offline mode, and will suspend a game or app after three minutes without connectivity. With last month's disastrous SimCity launch highlighting the potential issues faced when a game is unable to be played offline, the reaction to these latest rumors has been understandably negative.
One man who seems unconcerned, however, is Microsoft Studios creative director Adam Orth, who shared his thoughts with Twitter. "Sorry, I don't get the drama over having an "always on" console," he said, before adding a #dealwithit hashtag. "Every device now is 'always-on.' That's the world we live in." When pressed on the point, Orth compared the situation to buying a vacuum cleaner knowing the electricity in your house might go out, or using a mobile phone in an area with poor reception. He later made his Twitter account private, but the tweets were collated by NeoGAF users.
"Every device now is 'always-on.' That's the world we live in."
Of course, these messages can't be taken as anything close to official word from Microsoft, but it's interesting to read the thoughts of a studio director nonetheless. According to LinkedIn, Orth joined Microsoft early last year after working on Kinect Star Wars at the now-closed LucasArts, and has been assigned to an unannounced project ever since. While he would probably be in a position to have information on Durango, Twitter doesn't seem a likely medium to announce any concrete details. With Microsoft expected to reveal its next Xbox later this month, however, we shouldn't have long to find out the truth.