Microsoft In Talks To Release An Official Xbox Emulator In The Future

The rumor sprouts from an email by the Xbox QA team.

Story Highlights

  • Microsoft is in discussions with emulator devs to publish an emulator on Xbox in the future, as suggested by an email sent by the Xbox QA team.
  • The emulators do not work in retail mode anymore, which incurred backlash. The decision to disable emulators was made because of the underlying security and legal risks.
  • The emulators still work in the dev mode, but users who opted in for insider rings are advised not to use them.
  • It is worth noting that the email is a few weeks old, and the leaker has asked the community to take it with a grain of salt.

Microsoft is reportedly in talks to license an emulator to Xbox that solves the various underlying issues with third-party emulators on the platform. The rumor stems from an email by the Xbox QA team that was sent to a developer at Microsoft Azure, Alyanna Mckenna, on Twitter. A ton of recent reports suggest it has recently disabled emulators for the Xbox consoles in retail mode, as said by the famous Modern Vintage Gamer.

The email also featured the part where the Xbox QA team mentioned the possibility of an official Xbox emulator.

That said, we are still exploring ways to allow safe and legal emulation on Xbox. We are in talks with legitimate emulator developers to bring their software onto our platform while ensuring that all copyright laws and security protocols are followed,” email clarified.

The Xbox team clarified that the brand had to ban emulators because of the possible security and legal risks that come with a few of them. Microsoft gave the example of Nintendo, noting how it can lead to legal issues because of the copyright protection without giving consent to emulate older Nintendo gems on emulators.

Moreover, bad actors can also take advantage of the vulnerabilities that result from it and exploit the system quite easily. The email response further made it clear that Microsoft does not intend to remove the ability to use emulators by utilizing the integrated developer mode. The restrictions and the set rules in the dev mode work in favor of emulation on the Xbox platform.

However, we understand that many users have dev mode enabled to run legal emulation. We don’t seek to remove this ability, as it doesn’t grant access to the retail components of the system and is considered safe. Unlike retail emulators, dev mode is limited to certain functionalities and doesn’t have system read-write functionality,” as stated in the email.

Note: Emulating on the dev mode also comes with a few issues if you are on “the insider rings (delta, beta), etc.Alyanna Mckenna has asked the community to avoid dev mod at all costs for the aforesaid Xbox insider preview build users and leave it first. “DO NOT USE DEV MODE, It has a high probability of bricking the console, LEAVE THE RING first.

It is worth noting that the email is a few weeks old, as per Alyanna Mckenna; it is best to take it with a slight pinch of salt. Moreover, the Azure developer was unable to provide the actual email because she is currently admitted to the hospital. 

Some users on Twitter have raised eyebrows concerning the legitimacy of the email. The community is surprised that Microsoft pointed out Nintendo only in the context, and a few other points were made against the rampant rumor. However, Alyanna Mckenna has tried to clarify the context to the doubtful users.

All in all, Microsoft has not officially disclosed the plans to bring an official emulator in coalition with devs on the platform, which would omit the possible security and legal risks that come with third-party ones. We may hear an official announcement if the plans for an official Xbox emulator are followed through.

Similar Reads: The Murder Of Sonic The Hedgehog Has Surpassed 1 Million Players On Steam.

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Shameer Sarfaraz is a Senior News Writer on eXputer who loves to keep up with the gaming and entertainment industries devoutly. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science and several years of experience reporting on games. Besides his passion for breaking news stories, Shahmeer loves spending his leisure time farming away in Stardew Valley. VGC, IGN, GameSpot, Game Rant, TheGamer, GamingBolt, The Verge, NME, Metro, Dot Esports, GameByte, Kotaku Australia, PC Gamer, and more have cited his articles.

Experience: 4+ Years || Education: Bachelor in Computer Science.

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