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Most Recent Xbox One news

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Xbox One update coming April

Xbox OneToday’s announcement from Microsoft is the next step in the continual improvement the Xbox One is undergoing. Microsoft are inviting users to help give feedback on what needs the most attention the soonest. After the last update, here’s what in next month’s.

  • Game and app saves and updates. A game save progress bar will show you the status of your game saves. You will also be able to easily tell what games and apps are being updated or have been updated recently.
  • Friends improvements. Notifications will be added to see when favorites and friends sign in to Xbox Live. This actually was one of the most frequently requested features from the first preview wave and we made it a priority to include it in the April update. Also, friends who are in multiplayer will be identified in the friends list. We’ll also add the ability to view friends’ most popular apps.
  • Kinect voice and motion improvements will continue to fine tune the quality and reliability of Xbox One commands.
  • Improved GameDVR video quality through compression algorithm improvements.

You may be contacted by Microsoft via Xbox Live over the coming weeks as they continue to expand the userbase that is inputting to the process of improving the Xbox One experience.

As always, we will bring you any more news on Xbox One updates as we receive it, as well as the PS4, Wii U and other systems.

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Sky Go’s a Big No Go on Xbox One

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Anyone who is waiting on the release of Sky Go for the new gen consoles and still clinging to the idea is to be sorely disappointed. Sky, categorically, has no plans to launch Sky Go on either Xbox One or PlayStation 4. Instead, wishes are for existing Sky customers to either pay through the nose for Now TV ( a Sky product) or upgrade their subscription to include a new set top box and Sky multiroom. Which isn’t a fully supported Xbox experience yet.

Just Google “Xbox One all in one entertainment system” and you’ll be presented with four xbox.com results the all reference all in one entertainment system in the page title. The official “Meet Xbox One” website page harks on about how Xbox One is the next generation entertainment system. PlayStation has never had Sky Go but this news is relevant to those who were hoping PlayStation may enjoy the same level of entertainment services provided by rival Xbox.

For many Sky customers it is the norm to have Sky in one room and the console in another and Xbox 360 users have been able to enjoy the option of watching Sky in two rooms at once with no additional charges via the Sky Go app. When I quizzed Sky on the whereabouts of a Sky Go app for Xbox One and PS4, I was told that “We enjoy a long track-record of innovating with Microsoft and look forward to the launch of NOW TV on Xbox One by summer.  As a dedicated over-the-top service, we have prioritised the availability of NOW TV, to extend the reach of the service to the main TV.  Looking ahead, we will also consider any future opportunities for Sky Go.”

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As we know, Now TV is coming to Xbox One in the Summer of this year and is there to replace Sky Go, it would appear. For non-Sky customers that’s great because now you can enjoy Sky when you want without the monthly contract. But what about existing Sky customers? Well, there’s two options. The full Sky TV package costs around £60.00 per month. Now TV, if you’re a sports fan and watch movies, will cost you around the same each month, if not more. Not an option really. A better idea is to get Sky multiroom which will only set you back £15.00 a month and a one off setup fee of £60.00. However, Sky isn’t fully supported on Xbox One so you’re still going to need that Sky remote on the arm of your chair to navigate the Sky Guide. The One Guide does not work for Sky TV, unlike Now TV which which will of course be fully supported on both Xbox One and PS4.

I wasn’t overly happy with Sky’s official line on the lack of a Sky Go app so I spoke to several different representatives of Sky in their sales and technical support departments to try and get some insight into what was going on. What I was told by one very knowledgeable and open representative was that there are categorically no plans to bring Sky Go to Xbox One or PlayStation 4. During our conversation, it was revealed that Now TV is in no way designed for Sky customers and the pricing is set to match the cost of a full Sky TV subscription, should someone use Now TV that much – i.e a football game each weekend and movies for the month. However, it can be assumed that Sky aren’t trying to push people to take out Sky TV subscriptions as they don’t support your Sky box being plugged into the Xbox One or PS4 with the  necessary software to enable the likes of voice control and the One Guide. Something USA subscription TV providers have done from launch. Gratned, it would appear that Microsoft are as much a part of One Guide integration as the provider of the TV service and Sky aren’t very forthcoming with any information on where they are with integrating their service with One Guide.

Sky+ HD boxWhat I can tell you is that existing Sky customers simply aren’t a priority with regard to watching Sky TV on  consoles. Sky’s reasoning is that the 3 million and counting Sky Go users have Sky Go as a consequence of having a Sky subscription and can just turn that on on their main TV and watch Sky like normal. This is fine but a lot of people, myself included, have Sky in the lounge and the console in another room. Sky’s focus is on increasing the mobile devices that Sky Go works on in the form of Android tablets and smartphones, plus one or two others, and getting Now TV up and running which of course doesn’t benefit existing Sky customers in anyway shape or form. Now TV is the priority at the moment and while details are still quite limited, more announcements are being promised nearer launch. What can be said for sure is any speculation that existing Sky customers will get existing customer discounted prices or perhaps be able to use Now TV as a second set top box, can be forgotten about. I can confirm that Now TV is in no way shape or form designed or meant for existing Sky customers. What would have been nice would be to use a multi room subscription through the Now TV box so that Sky customers at least have a bit of hardware that actually works fully with the next gen consoles.

So there you have it folks, there’s a serious blind spot when it comes to existing Sky customers being able to enjoy Sky TV on the new consoles. While Sky customers can, it’s going to cost and there’s no hope of Sky Go coming to relieve that anguish any time soon!

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Twitch Broadcasting is coming to Xbox One on 11 March

The best broadcasting and spectating experience on any console is on its way when the new Twitch app launches on Xbox One on 11 March.

Twitch, the world’s largest video platform and community for gamers, with 45 million visitors per month and Xbox One, the only all-in-one games and entertainment system, are joining forces to bring the Twitch experience into the new generation.

Both Twitch and Xbox One are seeing blazing growth, with Twitch’s traffic skyrocketing and Xbox One off to the fastest launch in Xbox history. On the heels of the acclaimed “Titanfall” beta, which peaked at No. 1 on Twitch across all platforms with more than 65,000 concurrent views on 13 February, it’s time to give the world its first taste of next-generation multiplayer action. On 14 March when “Titanfall” launches, Twitch and Xbox One come together for the first truly next-gen Twitch experience, one that can’t be matched by any other console.

Only with Twitch on Xbox One, can you broadcast and watch your favourite games live by simply saying “Xbox, Broadcast”. Once you’re done broadcasting, you can use Twitch to watch the games you love, chat with the players you follow, or even join a broadcaster’s game. Xbox One is the only next-gen console that allows you to archive your Twitch broadcasts and view live Twitch streams regardless of their original source.

“Only Xbox One offers the most complete Twitch experience, with access to any live broadcast and the full Twitch catalogue,” said Yusuf Mehdi, Corporate VP of Marketing, Xbox. “We’ve designed Xbox One to be the best place to play with features and unparalleled partnerships that deliver epic moments for gamers.”

“Over the last two years, we have seen the broadcasting and spectating of video games go from a niche activity to a pastime shared by millions,” said Emmett Shear, CEO and Founder, Twitch. “As the experience grows in popularity, it’s important to provide as broad a feature set as possible for the community. Microsoft has done just that by rolling out the most robust console integration of Twitch to date and setting a new bar for others to strive for.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QMq_ajNBTy8&feature=youtu.be

 

xbox-one-kinectTwitch on Xbox One

Thanks to Kinect, Xbox One owners that have completed a one-time setup of their Twitch account can begin live streaming their game of choice simply by saying “Xbox, Broadcast” at any point during their time playing it. Kinect also allows you to easily include your picture-in-picture video feed and audio commentary along with the game broadcast, making it the perfect way to connect with your friends and followers. Xbox One’s Twitch app is a great way to meet new friends too, as you’ll be able to view the gamer card of anyone streaming from Xbox One and begin following them.

Your Twitch activity will appear in the friends app and activity feed of your followers, giving everyone a real-time update on what you’re broadcasting or watching. You can even set up notifications for a heads-up when one of your favourites begins broadcasting and earn Media Achievements just by spectating as you normally would or by checking out any of the Xbox One games you haven’t seen before.

During the broadcast, broadcasters and viewers will be able to interact (viewers can post comments in the chat stream, while the broadcaster verbally responds or assigns a moderator to keep chat running smoothly while they’re busy playing). As an added bonus, broadcasters can invite friends into a private party from the chat stream, allowing them to voice chat outside of the broadcast.

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Xbox One party chat sucks…here’s a solution

The Problem

Microsoft have been open about the fact that there are issues with the Xbox One’s software, well, open about some of the issues. Each week that passes seems to spawn a new problem, bug or issue that can be added to the now quite considerable list of super annoying Xbox One bugs.

wp_20130716_006For the last week, I’ve been trying to play Battlefield 4 with my buddy Tim over at Gamertag Gaming because let’s face it, BF4 is so much better when playing with friends. I’m going to ignore the bizarre way that BF4 adds parties of players to games and the fact that it  splits the party up onto opposing teams, resulting in you spending every redeploy seeing if you can swap teams for another day. It’s just another oddity of BF4 and lets hope it gets fixed soon.

No, the real issue and the one that will in fact stop you playing a game with friends is trying to talk to them via  “Party Chat”. Microsoft’s all singing, all dancing new chat and party system is total crud. There’s no issue with how it looks or how it snaps, and starting and making a party works fine. It’s when  the time comes to connect chat. I don’t quite understand why Microsoft think that people may want to be in a party but not talk to each other and thus, have chat as a separate thing but that’s how it is. And it’s well and truly broken. All week we’ve been struggling to get chat to work and have been bombarded with the wonderful “Cannot turn on party chat at this time” error message. Last night it got beyond a joke. After an hour of power cycling routers, modems, Xboxs and kettles, a solution to this infuriating problem was found. Credit where credit’s due, it was my buddy Tim that suggested, “why don’t we use Skype?”. 

 

The Solution

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It’s so blatantly obvious it’s almost painful but, it’s taken us a week to realise it and so we thought we’d share in case you haven’t realised it quite yet either. Microsoft, as I mentioned, are aware of the problem and are working on it as Major Nelson told the Verge. However, while we wait till the Spring for the big big update that’s touted, we can work around the Party Chat nightmare with the Skype app. It’s totally free and only requires you to signup so that you have a username. It also works, brilliantly. It’s a bit more of a ball ache to get a party going now as you have to call your friend, or friends, and then start a the actual Xbox Live party before gaming but it’s a viable solution. Well, for the next few months anyway. If Microsoft don’t get Party Chat working soon, this solution will evaporate as Skype will charge us to make Group Calls. So, fine in the long term for one-to-one calls but, to use it as a replacement for Party Chat with multiple people involved, you’ve only got 6 months of free Group Calls with you Xbox Live Gold subscription. After that, money required.

However, if Microsoft don’t get this and the plethora of other issues cropping up on the Xbox One sorted within 6 months, I think there’s going  to be a bigger problem than not being able to use Party Chat reliably, more  likely a mass exodus to another console. It’s just another case of developers and manufacturers releasing things before they’re actually properly finished and tested. I for one, am getting sick and tired of the industry using us, the people who play and use their products, as beta testers and guinea pigs to find the faults. Why do we have to put up with 6 – 12 months of crap gaming while the devs sort out the bugs? Want us to find out? Leave a comment.

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The Truth behind Xbox One iPlayer Delay: BBC Development Blunders Exposed

Ultimate Gaming Paradise has uncovered that the developers hired by the BBC to work on the iPlayer app for Xbox One have encountered serious development problems – more specifically, issues surrounding the Kinect sensor technology and integration into the iPlayer experience. One unnamed development source, working on the iPlayer project, has told UGP that “we can’t seem to get it working; it [the Kinect senor] is causing a major development headache for the team.” This information, however, has found Ultimate Gaming Paradise in a bizzare situation. We have been “warned off” from publishing this article with the threat of “consequences” for UGP if we do go ahead and break the story. So, here we are, breaking the story!

BBC iPlayer LogoIn a previously released statement, the BBC stated that they “are working to bring BBC iPlayer to Xbox One in the future, and that they have no further details to share at this time.” When contacting the BBC last week, Ultimate Gaming Paradise was ‘stonewalled’ with statements of “the BBC is working hard to deliver the app”. Furthermore, after talking to Microsoft and the BBC, this reporter was contacted by an individual who refused to give me his name or contact details. All he said was that he claimed to be from Microsoft’s PR department and wanted to “warn” UGP of the “consequences” of publishing – from a blocked number! With the iPlayer app originally being billed as a launch app, it’s understandable that Microsoft and the BBC are very quiet on the matter and don’t want this story seeing the light of day. However, in the spirit of free press, freedom of speech and a bucket load of bollocks, we have decided to throw caution to the wind, give two fingers to our mystery caller and unveil the juicy details as to why Xbox One is still without iPlayer and what this means for you, me, Microsoft and the BBC.

It all started when a whistle-blower spoke to UGP and discussed the reasons for the lag behind PS4 iPlayer app launching and the no-show Xbox One iPlayer app launch. Our anonymous whistle-blower, who works on the development team, informed UGP about a serious iPlayer flaw, which surrounded the user interaction with Kinect. Testing indicated that slight movements, from picking up a cup of coffee to scratching your nose, interrupted entertainment playback. Hardly ideal and curious that that is the sole problem when there are already a plethora of games and apps utilising the Kinect’s voice recognition and motion sensor technology. It must be said that this is of tremendous embarrassment to the BBC who only last year publicly acknowledged a £100 million IT project to update the BBC archives software, failed. That failure was cataclysmic with the £100 million software, completely useless and unable to perform the task for which it was commissioned. A total waste of money! The availability of the PlayStation iPlayer app has led many to question the BBC’s lack of public communication on the matter. According to a freedom of information request, the iPlayer costs upwards of £4 million per year to develop and maintain. This blunder will obviously cost the license fee payer even more money in the long run. It also begs the question, how much of this money over the course of the past year has been wasted on this now problem-riddled Xbox One iPlayer project?

The unnamed whistle-blower, a programmer on the BBC’s development team, has been working on the Xbox One project since its inception last year and is a coder with many years’ experience. However, bureaucratic wrangling and BBC top-down project management has resulted in project deadlines being overrun. The additional problem of the Kinect sensor affecting playback has caused the development team to re-write segments of code for the application. The unnamed source claimed the app wouldn’t be available to UK Xbox One gamers until the second quarter of 2014 at the earliest – which begs the question will it be released by this summer?

Due to confidentiality agreements, the unnamed whistle-blower did not divulge the technical nature of the issue. However, the whistle-blower did state that playback functionality was stymied by the Kinect technology. He also stated that since other developers have managed to get their Kinect-ready apps (meaning NetFlix or LoveFilm) working seamlessly, this is a marketing disaster for the BBC, what with being a digital media partner of the Xbox One. We have to ask, with the BBC saying as early as October last year that iPlayer won’t launch with Xbox One, just how long have the developers been trying to find a fix?

xbox-one-kinectThis issue will also affect Microsoft, as the Kinect sensor is a big part of the entire Xbox One gaming experience. Microsoft has remained tight-lipped over the news. The unnamed source claims Microsoft has known about the issues with iPlayer for “several months”. However, Microsoft has continued to state in the press that the BBC (iPlayer software) will be a crucial entertainment “partner” platform on the new Xbox One ecosystem. Entertainment is a crucial cash cow for Microsoft and digital partners. The BBC’s iPlayer app has been hugely popular and it’s availability on Xbox 360 has resulted in increased popularity of on-demand platforms.

The BBC who “have been working with Sony” to allow PS4 users access to the iPlayer service highlights the difference in development. According to our source, “Sony would send the [PS4] team any and all assistance. However, Microsoft was slow in each and every request for data or help.” However, the lack of support from Microsoft dwarfs in comparison to the realisation that a team worked on a project for months and months to then find a core element of the experience was faulty. The source claims “Kinect was so central, so crucial and so important, we kinda forgot about the user experience.” Furthermore, “meeting our [project managers] targets along with [project] meetings ate up development time.” Adding “we feel like they don’t understand how important good quality code is. Any problems just seem to take second fiddle to ‘timetable’ requirements.”

The delay is likely to cause embarrassment to the BBC during a period when they scramble to rebuild public confidence in the corporation after the IT blunders of last year followed up by the heinous Saville allegations. All of which have affected the corporation’s public standing. This debacle will be another in a long line of problems the BBC has kept hidden from license payers and the public.

However, the gaps in delivery will likely worry Microsoft also, who is failing to catch-up to Sony in the so-called “console wars”. The always-on and entertainment centrality of the Xbox One makes the iPlayer’s absence even more conspicuous. Microsoft and the BBC need to discuss this “development delay” in order to release iPlayer for Xbox One users, as their next-gen counterparts in the PlayStation 4 camp are already watching episodes of ‘The Great British Bake Off’ in the comfort of their own PlayStation 4 platform. Could this delay only prove to hurt the Unique Selling Point of the Xbox One? Why spend a hundred quid more on a console that won’t even play iPlayer? NetFlix and LoveFilm are fine, but license-fee payers get iPlayer for free?

This needs to be sorted out as soon as possible as it will affect the wider public perception of both the BBC as a vendor-neutral provider and Microsoft as a developer of a top-class platform. However, questions do need to be asked of the BBC. This is the second major IT blunder, in as many years now. The corporation must come out in public and state when the millions of UK Xbox One users will get access to content covered by their license fee? Furthermore, the BBC must investigate why developers were forced to conform to bureaucratic top-down management, since our whistle-blower seemed to pinpoint the blame on “BBC Senior managers.” The BBC must launch an inquiry into the management of BBC iPlayer development and find out how these blunders could have been avoided and also come clean with the amount of public money wasted on what is now defunct software.

UGP have already got the wheels in motion to discover just how much the contract that was awarded to develop iPlayer for Xbox One is worth and how much the delay has cost license fee payers. We will be investigating in depth, just what has been wasted and whether or not the BBC got the best value for their money, or should I say, our money, when they undertook this project and indeed many others.

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What is the “WAR” mentality in the so-called console ‘debate’?

Okay, since 2000, Sony has shipped nearly quarter of billion PlayStations in the different guises of two, three and now four. Similarly, Microsoft, since 2000, has shipped nearly 110 million Xboxes (360/original). Nintendo, in the meantime, has sold 105 million Wii (both original and U). These numbers don’t include Vitas, DSs or any handheld games consoles. So, obviously PlayStation sold more, around double their nearest competitor. However, there are around 2,8 billion gamers worldwide, the above accounts for only a fraction of that number? It’s not as clear cut as the media like to make out.

Next Gen ConsolesYou just need to type into Google, “Xbox One versus PlayStation 4”. The response is epic! You’ll get articles on ‘Sony and Microsoft, at War’ to ‘Sony destroy Xbox’. The current batch of articles surround the notion that Sony, who shipped 4,3 million PlayStation 4 consoles over the Christmas period trounced Microsoft who “only” shipped 3,2 million units. There are factors that the press seem to be ignoring or unable to comprehend.

According to research by ParentDish, pester power over past five years (since the recession started) has seen economics beat child pester power. Therefore, Xbox could be loosing out because it is ‘so much more expensive’. However, angry PlayStation newbies have been angrily messaging PlayStation community walls with messages of PlayStation Plus membership woes – which by the way adds £40 to the bundle. The PlayStation Eye is another purchase that Microsoft Xboxers don’t have to worry about.

But these issues don’t seem to be evident in the wider reportage. Forbes, for example, has a great headline “Why Sony’s PS4 is Crushing Microsoft’s Xbox One In Sales So Far”. What a great headline. It would make any browser think Microsoft was done for! However, there isn’t a single mention by Paul Tassi, the author, about the fact PlayStation 4 consoles are sold at a loss – he mentions the extra cost of the Kinect. According to leaked memos, Sony needs to sell double the initial quota to even begin to break even. The Microsoft Xbox (including the Kinect sensor) on the other hand, has been priced so that each console has a marginal profit for Microsoft. So if Sony are selling their consoles so cheaply they’re not making any profit, which console is beating who here?

NSA spying and the Kinect has been a big issue. The ‘always-on’ element of the Xbox One has scared off many users. Think about it, a US-made camera in every bedroom or lounge in the world ‘spying’ on you. It’s ridiculous – even if PRISM was spying on me, I can’t for the life of me think why and I feel sorry for the poor analyst who has to look at video footage of me there shouting at Ryse, FIFA or CoD. But that’s for another article. In reality, the price difference and the fact Kinect hasn’t been wholly justified, has dented sales. But we are too early yet to declare winners.

nintendo-wii-u-systemIn fact, there are no ‘real’ winners. People like playing games – there will not be one dominating platform that will take over the gaming world. We like variance and variety and as such some will sell more, others will sell less but they will continue. Microsoft Xbox One and PlayStation 4 are now part of a dynamic of mobile, computer and console gaming that will continue to grow. We need to evaluate user needs and experiences alongside ‘zero sum’ game approaches to initial sales data. There is a large body of academic research that argues Hollywood was destroyed the moment it started publishing box office takings. Once it was about ‘money’ and ‘return on investment’ the artistic verve was lost. We are slowly creeping towards such a period that will see consoles and games destroyed because they ‘didn’t sell enough in the opening weekend’.

Console data is about quarter periods (i.e. three monthly periods) not weekends or months. It takes time to ship, to dispatch and sell consoles. As such, it’s wrong that it hasn’t even been a full quarter yet and we are already stating that consoles are dead and buried. Last year Nintendo was ‘dead’ and ‘buried’ because Wii U hadn’t sold enough. People predicted that Nintendo would have shut down the Wii U by 2014. It’s 2014 and Wii U is, whether you like it or not, still with us. We need to allow diversity within the gaming sector. How boring would life be if the fanboys and fangirls got their way? A beige generation of gamers would be born. I, personally, would hate for that to happen. So let’s stop thinking about wars, destruction and end-games and star thinking about consoles plural. Innovation only happens when companies compete. I know many people don’t like or want to hear this but, Microsoft needs Sony and Sony needs Microsoft – as much as Nintendo needs both Sony and Microsoft. It’s a dynamic that will continue and one that should be applauded. Last thing we want is for games to turn out like movies. “Oh, I didn’t buy Titanfall because it wasn’t in Amazon’s top 10 best seller list?” That would be a horrendous blow to great games development. So let’s try to be a bit more open-minded and help maintain the integrity of the games industry by being proactive in terms of competition.

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“My Disc Won’t Load or Play?” DVD PlayBack Woes Affect Xbox One Users

The Xbox One, unlike previous generation consoles, requires that you install a Blu-ray player (with codecs) before you get DVD or Blu -Ray playback functionality. The lack of pre-installed video player has damaged the ‘entertainment’ factor of the console. Many analysts argued that this was the pièce de résistance of the entire Xbox One experience. However, angry Xbox One gamers took to the Xbox Live community walls to lambast the DVD playback functionality of their ‘next-gen’ console.

However, angry Xbox One users are not amused by Microsoft’s lack of communications with users. One user, VRattleHead, reports “I hadn’t tried playing a regular DVD yet. I had watched District 9 Blu-ray a few days ago and had no issues whatsoever with it. So I decided to watch a regular DVD. After watching the movie for about 10 minutes – the picture froze (like the movie was paused). I tried hitting/saying “play” but the xbox said it couldn’t “play” from here.” Issues surrounding playback, lipsyncing and skipping have been widely reported on the forums.

Microsoft UK declined to comment when Ultimate Gaming Paradise contacted them. Their advice was simple. “Your console, if defective, is covered by warranty. However, we will not comment on speculation.” The lack of comment is telling. Microsoft ‘Xbox forum Ambassadors’ have yet to ‘comment’ on other users. VRattleHead joined by BeaUTaT, Xenokai, DazzleRazzle, Smilalicious, Fezzwick and DETigger are yet to have any comment regarding their Xbox One DVD Playback woes.

Disc won't load Xbox OneHowever, does this impact on the next gen console? According to The Guardian, sales of DVDs have fallen. Around 250 million discs are sold each year in the UK. However, UK sales have been affected by two elements. Firstly, the 2008/09 economic downturn saw HMV, Game and other ‘high street retailers’ nearly go to the wall – Woolworths did! The rise of digital distribution from Netflix to LoveFilm via BlinkBox, Apple TV and UltraViolet Flixter has created new avenues for watching content. These two elements have squeezed DVD and Blu-ray sales. Netflix, for example, was blamed wholeheartedly for the demise of Blockbuster rentals. Therefore, is the DVD issue, such a big issue?

There is an argument that a DVD collection is a bit like a CD or a vinyl collection – really nice looking with a few ropey or even dodgey bits and pieces (some even embarrassing). However, is it relevant? Do we really still watch DVDs? According to data released in 2012 by Netflix, the firm has nearly 30 million subscribers. The company has revenue streams that are twice that of major film studios like DreamWorks or MGM. Netflix has grown so much that in 2012 it launched it’s own digital content.

Therefore, are we missing out? Any trawl of any half decent film collection on DVD will find at least 30 to 40% of the same content available on LoveFilm and NetFlix. The PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One have both got full digital content provision by NetFlix and LoveFilm – BlinkBox and others will be coming shortly to the platform. Therefore, are we missing out? Is this a big deal for gamers? There is a sense that we where ‘miss-sold’ consoles. I myself have found that playing certain DVDs – and there is a correlation between older DVDs discs (not to be mixed-up with older films) – i.e. DVDs created before 2007 – and the lack of playback functionality. I found, out of my film collection of 128 DVDs, only 6 wouldn’t work! Now, my missus is a bit angry because HairSpray, 17 Again and Charlie St Cloud don’t work – perhaps Xbox One has an anti-Zac Efron chip, if so I will be very happy. However, other titles included the epic Shawn of the Dead and Die Hard.

Therefore, as much as I am delighted at the lack of Zack Efron on my console, the lack of Die Hard is much harder to stomach. So I don’t think the ‘digital’ element is really valid. Yes, they exist and I do subscribe. However, I was told I had DVD playback on the console and now I do feel cheated and I think this is an issue – overarching the entire experience. The lack of BlinkBox or BBC iPlayer along with other elements such as DVD playback has kind of clouded the experience. The Call of Duty Ghosts and other game glitches, and all the patches, have hindered the 2013 launch of Xbox One. Let’s hope 2014 brings a better Xbox One experience for gamers!

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