Microsoft intends to focus on the digital future of the Xbox One and is strongly considering the ability to gift and loan games digitally.
Microsoft Studios head Phil Spencer is focusing on digital for Xbox One, and with that he wants to expand the console's digital marketplace in ways that may include the sharing and gifting of games digitally.
Some gaming consumers have been resistant to buying digital games and DRM policies because of how restrictive they can be. Some companies have successfully introduced a digital marketplace for games that allows users to gift and loan games, such as Valve's Steam and the company's Family Sharing program. Spencer would like to do something similar for Xbox One, he told GameSpot.
"We totally believe in that future," Spencer said. "And any other marketplace you play in, these kind of mechanisms are out there."
Spencer was interested in this functionality when the Xbox One was announced; Microsoft planned on offering a Family Sharing plan for Xbox One. This was removed after Microsoft reversed several controversial Xbox One policies in June.
"We are now fully heads down on thinking about and building out the future of our digital marketplace to enable what people would expect, and hopefully some things that will delight them beyond their expectations," Spencer continued.
Microsoft's marketing for these sorts of Xbox One features was terrible, and Spencer now believes honesty with consumers is the best policy. Sugarcoating something that could potentially be controversial often makes matters worse. If the company approached a better digital marketplace for consumers, it could find itself interacting with much happier people.