Microsoft bumps eight countries off Xbox One launch listBy Ryan Noik 15 August 2013 | Categories: news
The Xbox One’s woes continue, with the most recent being that its global launch this year has been slashed by a third. While initially 21 countries were slated for a November launch window for Microsoft’s Xbox One, the latest news is that number has now been limited to 13 territories.
This means that now the next gen console will only be launched in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand as well as Brazil, France, Ireland, Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain and Mexico this year.
The countries bumped off this list include Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and Switzerland. These will instead join the likes of South Africa waiting for the console to rear its head 'sometime' next year. Those in the newly discarded countries who have preordered the console will apparently receive a free game when the Xbox One does arrive.
Explanations and Obfuscations
According to its statement, the move has to do with “ensuring customers get the best Xbox One experience the first day it is available”as well as “meeting demand.”
In a blog post, the company explained, “While we wish we could launch Xbox One simultaneously in these markets, there are many factors that determine the timing of specific market launches. This includes work to localize the Xbox One dash, incorporate additional voice and languages, and build partnerships to bring apps and meaningful local content to each country.”
What is mystifying though is why the company didn’t take this into account prior to its apparently overly ambitious launch plans. Now though, instead of launching with a bang – just in time for the holiday season and in the same period to give the PS4 a run for its money – it will be another Microsoft launch with a good number of markets tacitly being told what they cannot enjoy just yet.
In recognition of the “disappointing news for fans in the impacted countries”, Microsoft promised that it was “doing everything it could to bring Xbox One to you as soon as possible next year.”
To the point
Were it not for the fact that its competitor, the PS4, was launching at the same time, perhaps that would be enough. However, we can’t help wondering whether by the time it does come to the neglected markets, it may be too little too late, and essentially having handed the PS4 an early lead in the next gen console race.
The move joins a litany of course corrections and about turns to plague the imminent Xbox One, with almost every other week producing yet another development following what was, to be blunt, a disastrous unveiling at E3.
Granted, a year from now, this may well have all been forgotten, and the Xbox One may just have vindicated itself in the eyes of the consumer. First though, the company really needs to stop shooting itself in the foot, because that is not the kind of first person shooter that the Xbox system needs to be famous for.
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