Last year, Microsoft announced that all Xbox One retail units can be used as dev kits in the future so that anyone can become a Xbox developer. During ID@Xbox program launch, Microsoft said, “As part of our vision for enabling everyone with an Xbox One to be a creator, we absolutely intend to enable people to develop games using their retail kits. Right now, though, you still need a development kit! We provide two kits to everyone in the registered developer program. Additional kits, if needed, can be purchased.”
Again during the console launch, then Xbox VP Marc Whitten explained to Engadget as the following,
“It’s more of a timeframe thing. The vision of how the service and the console work together, how your console can be a dev kit, is a core part of the vision. It’s how we built a ton of the architecture. But moving from a low-scale — a small number of developers — to a large scale, there’s just more work to do there.”
However, Xbox Advanced Technology Group’s Martin Fuller revealed during Q&A session that Microsoft has dropped its plans to convert every other Xbox One retail unit into a dev kit.
“We were in the early stages of Xbox One looking at the idea of a retail kit that could be turned into a development kit, and vice versa,”
“In the end, although that was a very admirable goal, it hasn’t happened unfortunately. Can’t tell you the specifics of exactly why not.”
Later, Microsoft reaffirmed that those comments were wrong and they are still on track to deliver the announced solution.
The comments today were inaccurate. We remain committed to ensuring the best possible solution for developers and hobbyists to create games for Xbox One. We will share more details at a later date.
Source: Digital Spy
Update: Post updated as per Microsoft’s response.