Xbox boss Phil Spencer is determined to regain the trust of consumers which were befuddled by the Xbox One reveal and subsequent u-turn regarding 24-hour online check ins, its DRM policy, and refusing to sell Xbox One without a Kinect bundled in.
During a panel at the 2015 GeekWire Summit (thanks, Videogamer), Spencer said after the Xbox One reveal, Microsoft lost the “trust of our most loyal customers” due in part to the way it handled the console’s reveal and subsequent launch.
“Whether it’s always-on, used games, whatever the feature was, we lost the trust in them that they were at the center of our decision-making process,” he said. “Were we building a product for us, or were we building a product for the gamers? And as soon as that question came into people’s minds and they looked at anything, whether it was the power of our box, our launch line-up, microtransactions, what you find is very quickly you lose the benefit of the doubt.
“You lose your customer’s assumption that the reason you’re building your product is to delight them and not just build a better and more maybe manipulative product.”
“You lose your customer’s assumption that the reason you’re building your product is to delight them… not just build a better and more maybe manipulative product.
Spencer feels confident in the console’s current position, but states there are still misconceptions dogging the console which hits is second year on the market come November 22.
For instance: during a a GameStop managers meeting, Spencer said many store supervisors came up to him stating they still have customers asking if Xbox One can play used games.
“Just to be clear, Xbox One has always played used games from day one,” he said. “But that perception that gets set early on, because consumers have five seconds to internalize your brand and your message and then they move on. They’re not going to spend time to read what we say afterwards.
“Regaining that trust and the mindshare with the customer, the gamer, is incredibly difficult.”
Spencer added the company is more concerned with current and potential customers regaining confidence in Xbox products that outselling its competitors.
“We’re not motivated by beating Sony, we’re motivated by gaining as many customers as we can.” That said, Spencer is still unsure whether the company can best Sony in the market as the company has a “huge lead and they have a good product,” despite the games line-up and content available on Xbox One which he “loves” and is extremely proud of.
In July, Spencer said the company had sold more Xbox One consoles globally than Xbox 360 during the same period. The last figures released by Microsoft noted only “shipped” numbers to retail stores, which hit around the 10 million mark.
Microsoft has yet to reveal actual sales figures, unlike Sony which announced in July it had sold 25.3 million PS4 units life-to-date.
Microsoft will announce its latest financial results on October 22, and hopefully we’ll get a better idea of how the console is doing in the market.