Xbox One Minus The Disc Drive? Microsoft Considered It
That’s accurate, according to Phil Spencer. A version of the Xbox One that almost happened was one that did not contain a disc drive. It was considered up until mid 2013 before they changed their minds. It was after their presentation at E3 2013 that they decided to scrap the idea. It all boiled down to the community and how the console would handle it. The community probably wouldn’t have been too accepting of having a digital-only distribution. Secondly, there were technical issues with the idea in the first place. Game size and bandwidth would have caused some issues.
It’s a good thing that they went back on this idea. However, what would this have meant for game companies and the consumer? On the one hand, the consumer would be stuck with their purchase no matter how they felt about the game. If it was a game you didn’t like and wanted to return, you wouldn’t be able to – the fact of the matter is, you can’t return a digital download.
However, it could’ve helped the game companies. There wouldn’t be a middle man like GameStop where customers could trade the game in for chump change to get a different game for a little less. There also wouldn’t be a “used game” option where the developers lose money (or so it’s claimed they lose money through used game sales).
A version of the Xbox One sans a disc drive seems to have its pros and cons. There is no sure fire way to tell who would actually be getting the short end of the stick if this version of the console were to be a reality. Perhaps it’s something we will never know.