Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says he has no intention of selling the Xbox business.
"I have no intent to do anything different with Xbox than we are doing today," Nadella told reporters at the Code Conference in California this week, according to The Verge.
The Xbox 360 version of Saints Row: The Third is now available for free to Xbox Live Gold subscribers until the end of May. Weighing in at 6.86 GB, the title is normally sells for right around $20 on Microsoft's digital marketplace, but you can get it for nothing if you are an Xbox Live Gold subscriber. Earlier this month the action RPG Dust was available for free.
Microsoft will offer refunds to Xbox Live Gold subscribers who want to cancel their membership when new service policies go into effect in June. The company said yesterday that Xbox Live users will no longer require a Gold subscription to access Netflix and other entertainment apps beginning next month. Gold will still be needed for online gaming and to benefit from promotions like Games with Gold on Xbox One and Xbox 360.
Following a June system update for Xbox One and Xbox 360, users will be able to request a refund on their Gold subscription, according to Microsoft:
Microsoft sent out an announcement to customers today to let them know that some changes would be coming to Xbox Live Gold membership. Starting in June Microsoft will bring its free games give-away program, Games with Gold to the Xbox One, in addition to Xbox 360.
They also announced that Deals with Gold for Xbox One, which gives members exclusive discounts on games and content in the Xbox Store, will also be coming to Xbox One.
According to multiple sources within the company, Microsoft plans to lift the Xbox Live Gold requirement for consumers who want to watch Netflix, Hulu and other streaming media apps on Xbox 360 and Xbox One.
Basically it means that consumers who buy a brand new Xbox One will be able to watch these services right out of the box without having to worry about having an Xbox Live Gold account. Of course you'll still have to set up a free Silver account in order to do anything.
Microsoft's Games With Gold program will give Xbox Live Gold subscribers two more free games in May. From May 1 up until May 15, gamers can download Dust: An Elysian Tail for free. Originally released on Xbox Live Arcade in August 2012, Dust is a hand-painted style RPG adventure created by indie developer Humble Hearts.
Dust will be replaced on May 16 with Saints Row: The Third, the adult themed action comedy game originally released in November 2011.
According to a recent tweet from Microsoft's head of Xbox Phil Spencer, the new Xbox One version of Minecraft will allow you to do something that the Xbox One won't with Xbox 360 - have some measure of backwards compatibility. According to Spencer, Xbox 360 Minecraft owners will have the grand ability to transfer their save data over to the Xbox One version of the game.
Microsoft's second game in the Xbox Live Games With Gold free game giveaway promotion for the month of April is Deadlight. From now until the end of April Xbox Live Gold subscribers can download and keep the game free of charge.
Deadlight is a 2012 side scrolling survival horror/cinematic platforming game for Xbox 360 and Windows developed by Tequila Works and published by Microsoft. Deadlight is rated "M" for "Mature" by the ESRB.
Earlier in the month Hitman: Absolution was free as part of the program.
Xbox Entertainment Studios boss Nancy Tellem tells Bloomberg in this video interview that the PlayStation Network's television offerings are not a competitive threat to what Microsoft is doing with its Xbox Live original programming.
Tellem claims that the Xbox Entertainment Studios division has been working for a year and a half on creating its content, which is set to make a grand debut in June.
Seeing what Sony has done with the acquisition of Gaikai, Microsoft is considering the possibility of emulating Xbox 360 on the Xbox One. According to a report on Kotaku, Xbox partner development lead Frank Savage said that Microsoft does have some plans on emulation, but they are still "thinking things through."
"There are [plans]," he said. "But we're not done thinking them through yet, unfortunately."
Microsoft has revealed a line-up of new and original shows that will debut on Xbox Live for Xbox 360 and Xbox One. According to this Bloomberg report, the original programming includes a comedy sketch show with comedian Sarah Silverman, another with actor Michael Cera's JASH comedy group, and a stop-motion show with comedian and actor Seth Green's Stoopid Buddy Stoodios. Microsoft also plans a live broadcast of the Bonnaroo music festival in July.
Microsoft announced that the Xbox 360 version of Minecraft has now sold 12 million copies to-date at retail and online through Xbox Live Marketplace. Along with the announcement of the milestone, Microsoft also revealed that a new mod pack for the game called the Candy Texture Pack will be released on April 18.
San Diego's KGTV has a cool profile of Kristoffer Von Hassel, a five-year-old who discovered a security hole in the Xbox One account login. Kristoffer accidently managed to log in to his father's Xbox One account without knowing the password, according to the news station. He did this simply by entering spaces into the password prompt after failing to punch the right password in the first time.
Phil Spencer has been named the new Head of Xbox at Microsoft. In his new role he'll be in charge of Xbox Live, Xbox Music, Xbox Video and Microsoft Studios. Spencer says that he will employ a "gaming first" philosophy at the Microsoft division, making sure that video games are the most important component of the Xbox One.
Soon gamers will be able to share and gift games on Xbox One just like they can on Steam, according to what Microsoft Studios head Phil Spencer told GameSpot in a recent interview. Speaking to the publication during GDC last week in San Francisco, Spencer said that Microsoft believes in a future where digital content is king.
eSports gaming league Major League Gaming announced that its Xbox 360 app has launched today in Australia, Canada, the U.K and the U.S. You'll need an Xbox Live Gold account to use it. The streaming video / entertainment app allows users to get direct access via the Xbox 360 to its programming on MLG.tv, a streaming service the league launched in November of last year.
Microsoft wants to encourage better behavior in online interactions on Xbox One by handing out rewards to players. While punishing players that engage in racist, sexist, homophobic, or generally unacceptable behavior while playing games online is always an option, Microsoft also wants to add a layer of incentives that might serve as a positive way to get players to behave themselves.
Marc Whitten, best known as the chief product officer of Xbox at Microsoft, has left the company. Whitten has worked at Microsoft for the last 14 years and was key in launching all three Xbox systems, from the original console back in 2001 to the Xbox One last year. Whitten will take up the same role as chief product officer at wireless audio company Sonos.
Spike TV's Geoff Keighley recently conducted an interview with Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Game Studios Phil Spencer as part of South by Southwest 2014's Gaming Expo at the Long Center in Austin, Texas. While the conversation touches on a lot of topics, the most interesting thing discussed during the sit-down interview was fanboyism.
EA has released a Titanfall release schedule for the digital versions of the game on Xbox One and PC through its Origin digital distribution service.
While the Xbox One version of the game launches in the U.S. Canada, Mexico and Brazil today, it won't be available in other regions around the globe until March 14. You can check out the big list below. The Xbox 360 version of the game launches March 25 in the U.S. and March 28 in Europe (list via CVG).
After a long wait Twitch game streaming is now available to Xbox One users. Twitch live broadcasting allows Xbox One owners to live stream their gameplay footage online in almost the exact same way that it does on PS4. The only caveat is that Twitch streaming is restricted to Xbox Live Gold users only - but you can't do much without Xbox Live gold on Xbox One or Xbox 360 anyway. Once the app is set on your Xbox One, you access Twitch broadcasting by saying, "Xbox Broadcast" to their Kinect sensor.
Speaking at SXSW this weekend, Microsoft Studios corporate vice president Phil Spencer said that Xbox’s Games with Gold program (it's free monthly game giveaway for Xbox 360 - and eventually Xbox One) is "fundamentally different" than "other programs" (we assume he is referring the PlayStation Plus for PS3 and PS4) because it allows members to keep the games regardless of whether they continue to pay for a subscription or not.
A new post on Major Nelson's blog (Xbox Live's Larry Hryb) has revealed the next two free games you'll be able to download in March as part of Microsoft's ongoing free-game-giveaway program, Games With Gold. The free monthly game giveaway is for those who subscribe to Xbox Live Gold memberships.
In a recent interview with IDG News Service, Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said that customers who use lots of bandwidth should be charged more. People who download lots of files or stream content on a regular basis should naturally be charged, in his mind.
New documents from former NSA contractor Edward Snowden cited in a new Guardian report indicate that UK spy agency GCHQ evaluated the potential of using the Xbox 360 (and now Xbox One) Kinect peripheral as a means to spy on people. The report also indicates that the agency also considered the usefulness of the PlayStation Eye as well.
Microsoft's Xbox One self-publishing indie program ID@Xbox continues to grow with the announcement today that 65 new members have joined the program including Tony Hawk developer Robomodo, Castle Crashers creator The Behemoth, and Limbo developer Playdead. ID@Xbox program director Chris Charla said that with the addition of today's new members, total enrollment in the program currently stands at more than 200 developers.