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Microsoft Responds To Fan Outcry, Changes Xbox One Policies

Fans spoke, and apparently Microsoft listened.

In a reversal of the company's previous position, Microsoft announced Wednesday that its forthcoming Xbox One gaming console would no longer require a regular Internet connection and would not restrict used or shared games.

Since the system was revealed in May and at its big presentation at E3 earlier this month, Microsoft has been criticized for how it would need to "check-in" online once every 24 hours and for a confusing policy toward used games.

In an official post, Don Mattrick, president of Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business, says the company has listened:

"Since unveiling our plans for Xbox One, my team and I have heard directly from many of you, read your comments and listened to your feedback. I would like to take the opportunity today to thank you for your assistance in helping us to reshape the future of Xbox One.

"You told us how much you loved the flexibility you have today with games delivered on disc. The ability to lend, share, and resell these games at your discretion is of incredible importance to you. Also important to you is the freedom to play offline, for any length of time, anywhere in the world."

The first big change is that the Xbox One will no longer require an Internet connection to play offline Xbox One games, and there is no longer a 24-hour connection requirement. Mattrick says that after a one-time system setup online, disc-based games can be played without ever connecting to the Internet again.

The other change is that games can be traded, lent to other Xbox One owners, resold or gifted; there will be no limitations on using and sharing games, Mattrick says. Previously Microsoft said there would be restrictions with trading and selling used games, but the details of how that would function were unclear.

Xbox One games will also be playable on any Xbox One console, and there will be no regional locks.

These changes put it more inline with Microsoft's direct competitor, Sony's upcoming PS4 system. Sony stated at E3 that its system would not require an online connection and wouldn't restrict used games.

Both systems go on sale later this year, the Xbox One at $499 and the PS4 at $399.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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