Microsoft’s upcoming Xbox One is, by its very nature, a restrictive, exclusive device. Those without internet connectivity, for instance, cannot play games on that system for more than 24 hours, not until they go online to re-authenticate their games and device. So the Xbox One would not work in countries with a poor internet infrastructure, for example.
That is what makes Microsoft’s implicit assertion that the device might not be coming to Japan at all so puzzling: Japan is a large video games market, and it has a huge culture of playing games. But Wall Street Journal is reporting that Microsoft has not mentioned Japan in its plans to launch Xbox One in Asia.
Alan Bowman, Microsoft’s regional vice president for sales and marketing in Asia, says the move is part of a “staged approach” for the Xbox One, noting the company is planning to offer localised content once the console is available.
Its exclusion from Japan might be related to the historically low and abysmal sales the device has experienced in that nation. This does not, however, explain the Japanese support that Microsoft has been able to enlist for the console already.
The Xbox One will launch in India, Singapore, Hong Kong, and South Korea in 2014. It will launch in North America and Europe in 2013 holiday season.