When Microsoft announced yesterday that they were backpedaling a bit on their always-online and DRM policies for the Xbox One, you could almost hear the collective cheers across the world for consumers and Xbox fans. It would seem that if consumers are happy, and therefore they are now buying your products, then the company itself would be happy. As revealed in one Xbox employee's blog, that isn't entirely the case. In fact, this one employee laments Microsoft's ruling quite heavily.
However, this isn't the most interesting tidbit that came out in the blog post. The employee laid out more details on Microsoft's family sharing plan, which actually ended up sounding worse than it originally did from the conference. It originally seemed that sharing would lend someone the digital game for a set period of time one time and one time only. It turns out that this mode of sharing was really just a demo of the game that other users could save.
Anyone who you deem to be family had access to these games regardless of where they are in the world. There was never any catch to that, they didn’t have to share the same billing address or physical address it could be anyone. When your family member accesses any of your games, they’re placed into a special demo mode. This demo mode in most cases would be the full game with a 15-45 minute timer and in some cases an hour. This allowed the person to play the game, get familiar with it then make a purchase if they wanted to. When the time limit was up they would automatically be prompted to the Marketplace so that they may order it if liked the game...The difference between the family sharing and the typical store demo is that your progress is saved as if it was the full game, and the data that was installed for that shared game doesn’t need to be erased when they purchase the full game!
That's not exactly my idea of lending a game to a friend or a family member. Even e-books let you read the book all the way through within the lending time period (about 2 weeks).
The blogger goes on to say that they are no longer moving forward with this feature, and I can't say I'm sorry I won't get to experience this for myself.