Xbox 720: Three Reasons Why An Always Online Console Is A Disaster [OPINION]

By Prarthito Maity , Updated Apr 13, 2013 02:23 PM EDT

Fans have been clear about how they feel about an always online next Xbox: They don't like it.

Microsoft has neither confirmed nor denied that the next Xbox will actually be always online but if the rumor turns out to be true one benefit for Microsoft would be the imposition of strict digital rights management on all software that runs on the system. While there is piracy on the Xbox 360 it has never reached the levels seen on the PC or on Sony's PlayStation Portable. Microsoft may want to ensure it never does.

Whatever Microsoft's reasoning may be for possibly having an always-online console it is a terrible idea. Here are three reasons why an always online console could turn out to be a major disaster for Microsoft.

Vulnerable To Outside Attacks: Like PCs, if the console is constantly connected to the internet, there will be a flood of malware and hacking attempts. We live in an age where everything eventually gets hacked, even Macs,  and even a brief list of names that have succumbed include Nvidia, Steam and the FBI. Is Microsoft willing to take that chance? Considering the ever increasing state of viruses on the PC, which predominantly run Microsoft Windows, the answer appears to be yes.

Not Everyone Has A Speedy Connection: If Microsoft thinks that everyone on the planet, or the parts of the planet that buy Xboxes, has access fast internet connections and reasonable upload and download speeds, they are mistaken. What happens to people in rural locations with limited access? 

PlayStation 4 Is Not Always Online: Surely Microsoft is aware that Sony's PlayStation 4 will not be required to be always online. This could be the tipping point for people considering both systems. 

This should be the most important reason for Microsoft to opt out of selling a console that will require an always on internet connection to function. Unless it is willing to lose a good chunk of the customers waiting for the next Xbox to arrive.

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