Like Entertainment? Don’t Buy an Xbox One Right Now

Now is not the time to be a consumer device from Microsoft. More specifically, it’s really rotten time to purchase an Xbox One.

Don’t misunderstand, hardly anything about the all-in-one entertainment console has changed. You can still watch television shows. There are a handful of very high-profile games coming to the console later this year too.

That being said, you shouldn’t buy an Xbox One – or really any type of consumer device from Microsoft – because Microsoft doesn’t understand you… and I think the proof is here for everyone to see.

When Microsoft unveiled the Xbox One last year, it was the crown jewel on top of an entertainment strategy that was just starting to come together. The Xbox One’s processor, the Xbox 360, may have launched as a gaming platform, but very quickly Microsoft was able to build momentum by incorporating other types of entertainment in the experience. First they added Xbox Video, a place where the entire family could purchase movies and television shows. Then there was Xbox Music, an app that brought the company’s streaming services to the living room.

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With the Xbox One, Microsoft continued the tradition. Every Xbox One included updated Xbox Music and Xbox Video apps. An HDMI pass-through port also allowed users to plugin cable boxes and other extras.  All at once, the Xbox One was an acknowledgement that users do more than just game. Sure, gaming is a big industry and a popular activity, but many more man hours are spent watch television shows and listening to the latest LMFAO album through music services.

Lately, Microsoft has put all of that on the back burner. The Xbox Media Briefing at E3 2014 didn’t have any interesting information about the Xbox One outside of new games. A few weeks before the event it announced that more entertainment apps would be making their way to the console but nothing else. That was disturbing, but not surprising considering the disaster that was the Xbox Media Briefing the year before that.

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It’s gotten weirder though. Last week Microsoft laid of thousands of workers and announced that the 200 people who’d they’d charged with creating original video content for Xbox Live would find themselves out of a job over the next year or so. With that the company killed off any hope its Xbox Video service ever had of finding firm footing in a world where we all prefer to stream video more than we actually purchase a single episode of something for a $1.99.

All of this is happening as Xbox Music remains one of the worst alternatives for music streaming smartphones and tablets have ever known, and just yesterday Nadella announced that the company would be “streamlining Xbox Music and Xbox Video.” We don’t yet know what that means, but I seriously doubt anyone corporate executive has ever “streamlined” something and it ended up better than it was before.

To those closely watching the moves Microsoft is making, the writing is pretty much on the wall. Microsoft cares about selling hardware, but only in so much as it cares about moving new types of Windows devices. It’s as if, overnight, the Xbox One stopped being a consumer device and started being a soulless conduit to boost the amount of devices Microsoft can claim it sells with Windows on it. (The Xbox One actually runs a modified version of Windows.) Sure, that means users will still be able to play games on it, but these failures are shinning a harsh light on entertainment offerings Microsoft makes available to users through all of its platforms.

It’s clear that Microsoft doesn’t understand users. It doesn’t get that the average person needs a decent music experience more than they need a mobile version of Microsoft Office. It seems to have forgotten that a large portion of all Xbox Live activity was users enjoying streaming through Netflix and other video services.

I could be wrong. Microsoft could have some new revolutionary plan for approaching consumers in a way that matters. It could finally realize that the iPhone became popular because of the entertainment it allowed buyers to enjoy as well as the mobile version of iWork that they could purchase. Maybe it could even have some bold plan to finally give its users a cohesive music and video experience like iTunes.

I’m starting to doubt that though. There are now enough signs and strange comments being made that it’s not the right time to buy an Xbox One, Surface Pro 3 or any new Windows Phones that are made by Microsoft. All of this back and forth makes you question if Nadella or Microsoft really has a solid plan for making devices that enable the “digital life experiences” the company’s executives keep talking about.

People buy consoles – gaming, or even the Apple TV – because they want to be entertained. They might prefer games, but they also want to watch television shows and enjoy the latest movies. You wouldn’t purchase an iPod Touch if the music and video experience weren’t up to snuff. You wouldn’t purchase a Kindle if the reading experience wasn’t decent. How the Xbox One handles music and video is absolutely essential and Microsoft needs to understand that. If you’re a media lover, why would you purchase what should have been a living room console from a company that doesn’t understand the things you do in your living room?

You wouldn’t and you shouldn’t, so don’t.

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Comments

  1. FOOSKEEZ says

    Your an idiot, if microsoft would have continued with entertainment first then they would lose there gamer fanbase all together. I bet that if they would have stayed course on entertainment first you would be writing an article on why if you are a gamer now is not the time to buy an xbox one, ridiculous!

      • Edgar says

        This guy is crazy.. I wouldn’t invest in a company that I thought was going the wrong direction. I understand that some of Microsoft’s services need work but as far as my experience, I think MS is going the right direction. The ecosystem is getting better. Windows 8, Windows Phone 8.1, And Xbox One all work together perfectly for me.

  2. red says

    The only thing cut was their original entertainment section. Xbox music and Xbox video are still there and adding new content every week. In fact Xbox music is about to get an update to hopefully fix its many issues regarding playback and collection organization. So while Xbox entertainment studios is out…multimedia entertainment continues on the Xbox one as it was on the 360.

  3. Bryan says

    Would the author kindly disclose what brand of smartphone, tablet, laptop, personal computer, and media streaming device he owns?

  4. Archie says

    Very very poorly written, misinformed article. I know anyone on the internet can write an “article”, but jeesh

  5. Antony says

    How did they even let you publish crap like this. You are just pointless as a Dilbert’s boss.

  6. Dilip says

    Author, your article is very misinformed. It sounds to me like you’re worried that the focus and streamlining that Microsoft intends to take (already reflected in healthy profit growth) is going to stir up the ecosystem.

    Keep in mind that Microsoft’s strategy is indeed cloud and services. Devices is secondary but a necessary item for distribution. So streamlining Xbox music and video is possibly gearing up to offer a unified subscription service.

    You’re misinformed again. Xbox Music is the only offering that has a very good collection, and has great apps on all device types and doesn’t require windows phone for a superior experience (unlike iTunes and music).

    Get your facts right before you write another article and unnecessarily mislead.

  7. SuicideNinja (@SuicideNinja) says

    The article lacks a basis for this claim and it is desperately reaching for a reason to write a negative article about Microsoft.

    Pandora, Spotify, Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu cover entertainment services for users of all types of devices.

    Sony and Nintendo do not have headway in these particular areas with 1st party services, so singling out the Xbox One for it is ridiculous.

    I have a WP, iPhone, GS2, iPad, Win8 Tab and PC. I don’t use iTunes, google play, or Xbox Music/Video.

  8. Seth says

    This site is called got to be mobile, and implies that it is the place for all your mobile news an information, yet the fact that it doesn’t have a section for Windows Phone or even Blackberry for that matter, suggests that the author clearly is an apple or android and Playstation fanboy, and probably had never played on an Xbox let alone use a Surface tablet or Windows Phone. If you were even a gamer you would understand that the Xbox is a dedicated game console with the entertainment capabilities, you wouldn’t buy it JUST for entertainment, you would buy a roku/Apple TV/Fire TV if that is the pure reason. What a factless, baseless article written on the opinion of someone claiming to be an expert when they clearly haven’t done any research or given any logical thought to it.

  9. Brian says

    Author, you must understand that gamers are a very strong voice in today’s internet. As you can see, you’ve racked up a ton of hate from many such gamers already. This is what Microsoft has been having to put up with, and with this much flaming, I can’t go against its decision too much.

    But while I do value classic entertainment options over gaming, voices supporting these options don’t typically rise up and leave a scar of hate along the internet. We’re more of a softcore crowd, I guess you could say. And if the Xbox One is going to offer me superior entertainment, then I’ll get it; if not, I can find that somewhere else. It’s everywhere these days.

    I really do feel like the Xbox has been bullied into changing its ways, and it’s a bit saddening. I still feel like all digital game distribution is the future, and numerous, superior offerings for entertainment (primarily not for gaming) will be dominant. But I guess putting up with these internet warriors, ones who fear change, bully companies, authors and other gamers alike, and who represent a vocal minority, is the first step for Microsoft to see that future vision through.

  10. Didier says

    This article is the most stupid article I have read in a long time.

    Xbox videos and Music: so far nothing has changed and they are still running and improving the apps twice a month. I’m using Xbox Music and I love it. Xbox Video is far too expensive in my opinion.

    Xbox One is very good at games but also good for entertainment. You have lot of options between Netflix, Amazon instant video, Redbox Instant, Hulu Plus and at the same time, you can do a video call with Skype which is brilliant (even when you are playing games or watching TV if connected to the Xbox).

    FYI Xbox Music has probably the largest collection of songs of all online music service (30 Millions)

    Next time you write an article try to make it less obvious that you have been sponsored by Microsoft’s competitor…

  11. Edgar says

    I’m sorry but this article is full of nonsense…. This guy is paranoid for no reason.. He probably doesn’t have any other Microsoft device besides the Xbox One..

  12. GK15 says

    Terrible opinion piece. Comes off as completely baseless fanboy nonsense from a somewhat credible site.

    I have an Xbox One and I love it.

  13. james says

    Whoever wrote this needs to get there facts straight I have everything Microsoft surface, windows phone, Xbox one. I use xbox music and video. I love it all. Everything works great and yes like everything from iTunes to google play they all can improve. I have been a iPhone user and a android user. Windows phone and all Microsoft devices are the greatest device I have ever used

  14. Chris says

    Good article a lot of solid points. M$ has only ever really been interested in making vast profits. Not caring what it’s customers want, luckily they have so many acolytes (as demonstrated by all the comments like stfu) that’ll they buy the crap m$ put out and then defend said item to death.

  15. Josh says

    Mwhahahaha the comments on this. I love how everyone is complaining about the writer being a biased fanboy when they themselves reek of fanboy service. It’s the writer’s opinion, he’s entitled to it. Likewise, you are entitled to your opinion. Just remember though, at the end of the day, you’re all biased fanboys competing for the biggest dick and to an outside observer, it’s both HILARIOUS and PATHETIC.

  16. christopher Rampersad says

    What is this FROCKRY this person talking, Microsoft is the best, screw you dude. Apparently you are uneducated. What a shame.

  17. Daniel says

    You don’t have to be a “fanboy” to see this article is absolute crap. I tend to read these console war articles for the amusement factor but this is the worst I have seen! I would ask the question, if not the Xbox one what should we buy then? On the entertainment side of things I doubt anyone would claim any of the other consoles are better!

    I can’t beleive websites write this crap, seriously what was the objective here??

  18. penetronn says

    This article is completely on point. I bought Xbox One because I was sold a all-in-one entertainment experience. This is sadly something that Microsoft has destroyed in 12 months. I wanted a Games+Video+TV+Bluray+Music device. Now I have Spencer/Nadella hawking a kinect-less sub-par PS4. That is a battle that Microsoft can’t win. XB1 needs differentiation.

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