Without a dev kit – that is, the specialist equipment given to developers to test their pre-release builds before they're released and sold to the public – Minecraft developer Mojang could not get a head start on the PS5 version, putting them "at a disadvantage".
As Mojang is one of Xbox's first-party family of developers under the Xbox Game Studios umbrella, it's possible Sony was wary of sharing early editions of its hardware with its competitor.
"Sony was reluctant to send us development kits for the PlayStation 5 at the same time they were sending them to other developers, which put us at a disadvantage relative to other developers," Spencer said (thanks, IGN) as part of his testimony to the Federal Trade Commission this week.
"I think Sony could have sent the development kits to Microsoft just as easy as they sent them to any other publisher."
Phil Spencer also recently commented on the status of an Xbox Series X successor in a recent high-profile media interview.
The current CEO of Xbox Game Studios – who oversees the development of new titles for the Xbox Series X, among other duties – explained that he doesn't "feel an imperative" for the company to release an Xbox successor, saying: "That's not the feedback we're getting right now. Right now, we're pretty set on the hardware we have".
The Xbox Series X and Xbox Series S are now nearing three years of market availability as both systems originally launched in late 2020. The prior console generation saw a system revision in the form of the Xbox One X (in 2017) which debuted three and a half years after the Xbox One did. The decision behind the upgrade was to deliver 4K resolution to consumers, a feat that the current flagship Xbox console can do straight out of the box.
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