I, for one, love it
[Update: A Microsoft spokesperson has provided the following statement to Destructoid this morning: “We’ve carefully reviewed Ars Technica’s article, and have completed our own analysis of the actual data using identical parameters. Based on our findings, Ars Technica’s analysis and conclusions are grossly inaccurate and misleading due to an incomplete set of data and drawing conclusions about actual usage from data that approximates usage.
As an example, we specifically know, based on our complete view of Xbox Live usage data, players are highly engaged with backwards compatible game titles. It’s why we continue to support this well-loved feature and the games that use it. We appreciate the work and effort by Ars Technica to share more information about the Xbox community and we are continually looking for ways to do so that also protect the interests of gamers and our partners.”]
Ars Technica has been busy gathering data from Xbox Live users by way of a third party, with a sample size of 900,000. All of it has been put together in the form of a study that’s worth reading in its entirety, but there’s several highlights worth mentioning.
For one, 1.5% of the time spent by users polled was spent on playing backward compatible games, while 16.5% was spent watching Netflix. 54.7% played actual Xbox One video games, and Madden, Rainbow Six Siege, Forza Horizon, and Battlefield 1 reigned over everything else.
While it could be argued that some older gamers who may use backward compatibility more than others didn’t partake in this study, a sample of nearly one million isn’t anything to scoff at. Microsoft Corporate VP Mike Ybarra has refuted these numbers in no uncertain terms, but the company hasn’t provided data of their own in return.
The actual study goes into more detail about how these numbers were reached, but suffice to say it’s a nice trip down memory lane and even goes into some current Xbox 360 owner numbers. If I had to break down the time I spent on Xbox One I’d probably guess that 70% of my sessions are spent on Xbox One titles, 10% on apps, and 20% on backward compatibility. For me the feature has been more than worth it, and I’m glad that Microsoft opted to include it.