Microsoft’s announcement that the Xbox One would be backwards compatible was one of the biggest stories of the show so far. Which is a little sad when you think about it in a certain way. We wish these consoles had it to begin with, but hey, it was a huge moment.
PlayStation won’t be following suit though. Head of PlayStation Europe, Jim Ryan, said in an interivew with MCV:
Unfortunately there are just not sufficent enough software engineers in the world for everyone to do everything. Each platform holder has to make their choices, we made one and they made another. Their choice is entirely legitimate, and I think our choice is legitimate, too. In some ways it is quite nice to have points of difference between the two platforms, and people will decide which approach suits them best.
We have experience of backwards compatibility. The earliest PS3 model was backwards compatible with PS2, and it is a much requested feature… but actually it’s not so greatly used.
On balance, we are happy with our approach and we don’t wish to be defensive about it at all. But as I say, both approaches are legitimate.
He also commented on the unsure clarity of Microsoft’s announcement before adding a little bit of a dig at Microsoft saying:
I suspect there might be a few twists in that particular tale. But we will see.
This really is an important feature for consumers in a lot of ways. While Ryan took a pretty careful tact, I can see fans already hitting out agains the comments. Suggesting consumers don’t use it that much though?… Eesh. I don’t know.
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