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Xbox One SDK leak could let developers make homebrew apps for the console

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A group calling itself H4LT has reportedly leaked the full version of Microsoft's official Xbox One SDK — the software kit that approved Xbox developers use to make games and apps for the console. The leak was announced via H4LT's Twitter account, tweeting screenshots showing the SDK's files to Microsoft's official Xbox account.

Developers still need a license to release games on Xbox

The apparent public leak of the SDK doesn't mean that everyone with a basis in programming can start launching games and apps on Xbox One — developers aiming to officially release software on the company's consoles must register and be approved by Microsoft before doing so. But with the SDK in the hands of the public, there's the possibility that developers could create homebrew apps and modifications for the console further down the line.

The group behind the leak says there's "no definite exploit" at the moment that would allow developers to do that, but it hopes that people familiar with Windows 8 will be able to dig into the files to find more. The group says that it leaked the files because sharing with the community allows "creativity and research," but the public leak caps off a tough holiday period for Microsoft, in which its Xbox Live service was taken down by a DDoS attack on Christmas Day.