The man responsible for giving Microsoft’s original Xbox its name has penned a blog post outlining the poor job he says the company has done with the console over the past five years – and especially during the last 12 months. The former employee has a laundry list of activities where Microsoft is going wrong and believes that Apple could kill console gaming as we know it if they wanted to.
Nat Brown said Microsoft has been coasting on past momentum for several years and failing to innovate and capitalize on innovations like Kinect. He goes on to say that Microsoft has a total lack of tactical versus strategic understanding of the long game with regards to the living room.
Brown isn’t against the broad content / entertainment business with a living room connected device. In fact, he said that is exactly what the Xbox was designed for and why it was the Trojan horse for the living room. They wanted the Xbox to be welcomed by millions and replace non-console devices like set-top boxes and WebTV.
The problem, he says, is that Microsoft is forgetting the key purpose of the console: gaming. He says they are making it very difficult for indies to develop Xbox games and get them published. It should be just as easy to create a game for the Xbox as it is to build one for Android or iOS. Furthermore, Brown says the device OS and nearly the entire user experience outside the first two levels of the dashboard are creaky, slow and full of shit.
He concludes the rant by suggesting that Apple could put everyone under by introducing an open 30 percent cut app / game ecosystem for Apple TV. On the gaming side, that would likely require a beefed-up Apple TV but considering the company sold 5.3 million units in 2012, it says a lot about what Cupertino could do if (when) they wanted to.