Xbox boss ‘thinks about’ new hardware and mobile devices, admits first drought ‘too long’

What does the future hold for Xbox? Obviously, great things are happening right now pending purchase by Activision Blizzardbut we also recently heard Microsoft downplays things like Xbox Game Pass and cloud games which used to be the focus. Of course, part of this could just be trying to beat Acti-Blizz’s deal with the regulators, but it looks like Xbox’s strategy is indeed changing somewhat.

Well, in a new way Same Brain podcast interview, Xbox boss Phil Spencer gave an interesting answer when asked about the future of Microsoft’s gaming division. It doesn’t particularly touch on Xbox Game Pass, instead focusing on new hardware, developing exciting games with their expanded slate of core, and perhaps most importantly, mobile.

“In the longer term, we’re all for it. We’re thinking about new hardware, we’re thinking about new playstyles, new partnerships, new first-person things that we can do. We’re also spending more time thinking about mobile and what we have in mind for mobile players, because right now we don’t really have anything in mind for mobile players. It’s just an exciting time.”

In the same recent interview where Spencer admitted that Game Pass will likely never make up more than 10-15 percent of their business, he also identified free-to-play as the gaming model with the most potential, which is interesting when combined with with these new comments about mobile. That’s all “longer” planning, though — in the short term, Spencer understands 2022 was a weak year for Xbox releases, but promises bigger things will happen in 2023.

“One thing we definitely heard loud and clear is that it’s been too long since we’ve had what people would say was a big game from a first-timer. We may have our excuses with Covid and other things, but at the end of the day I know people are investing in our platform and want great games.

We’re excited about 2023 and have been talking about the games coming out. These games are tracking well, we don’t have what Covid has done to the production schedule. But I’m looking ahead to 2023 and I’m excited about the great lineup of games. To get our first true in-house Xbox games from Bethesda, to put them alongside Redfall and Starfield, is going to be a lot of fun.”

It looks like Xbox is at a crossroads – where do you think it should go next?

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