A new interview with former Xbox figurehead J Allard has revealed that the corporate vice president of design and development at Microsoft’s Entertainment and Devices division has no immediate plans for introducing video games content on the company’s Zune media player.
Allard was the most recognizable corporate face for Microsoft during the original Xbox era, but more recently has focused on iPod rival Zune – which was launched in North America last year. Both analysts and even some Microsoft executives have seemed to expect the Zune to feature games content from a relatively early stage but so far no major announcements have been made.
Speaking to news agency Reuters, Allard was asked what the outlook was for Zune and games, to which he was generally dismissive, saying; “Thus far, the market really hasn’t proven out that it is a great scenario. Customer satisfaction with what has been done isn’t that high.”
“I love games and maybe for someone with a 40-minute commute, it might be an interesting scenario,” said Allard. Expanding on his comments of negative customers satisfaction he added: “The other challenge is with the platform. The games that you bought in your fifth generation don’t run with your sixth generation. … The rate of innovation, turnover, and variety of form factors makes it a tricky proposition.
“That said, we have a lot of flexibility and a lot of magical software,” continued Allard. “What we’ve done with XNA is an incredibly portable environment designed to abstract some of the hardware differences. We’ll see where that takes us. We’re always thinking, but the Zune isn’t playing Halo 3 anytime soon.”