Xbox One is not backward compatible with any Xbox 360 games

Xbox One cloud
The Xbox One will feature cloud gaming, but can it save backward compatibility?

Microsoft introduced the new Xbox One during a press conference this morning, showing off features like the new Kinect, voice commands and exclusive NFL and Call of Duty content.

But it failed to address a burning question for fans: whether the new Xbox One console will be backward compatible with existing Xbox 360 games.

After the announcement, though, Microsoft's marketing director for Xbox UK, Harvey Eagle, confirmed that the new Xbox One cannot play any type of Xbox 360 game, either physical or digital.

This unfortunate development is due to the Xbox One's new architecture, which Microsoft's Marc Whitten described as "revolutionary."

Excuses, excuses

"Because of the Xbox One hardware and the new architecture, games from the Xbox 360 will not be compatible with the Xbox One," Eagle said.

"With digital content like movies or entertainment on Xbox live, you will be able to download to the One," he continued. "With gaming content, again because of the different architecture it won't be possible to play them on the Xbox One."

We've heard that excuse about past gaming systems that didn't feature backward compatibility, but is there a way to save the feature after all?

Can the cloud save backward compatibility?

During the Xbox One announcement, Whitten teased that the new Xbox Live experience has been redesigned around the cloud.

But Microsoft didn't address rumors from yesterday that the new Xbox system will focus on streaming games over the internet.

Cloud gaming could solve the backward compatibility problem by allowing players to play older games that are processed by far off data centers and streamed to the new Xbox One console.

Sony teased that functionality for backward compatibility in the PlayStation 4, but Microsoft hasn't made similar claims.

Maybe they'll surprise us at E3 2013?

Check out some of the Xbox One game trailers below:

  • Now that the Xbox One revealed that it's not backwards compatible this begs the question which is better the PS4 or Xbox One?
Michael Rougeau

Michael Rougeau is a former freelance news writer for TechRadar. Studying at Goldsmiths, University of London, and Northeastern University, Michael has bylines at Kotaku, 1UP, G4, Complex Magazine, Digital Trends, GamesRadar, GameSpot, IFC, Animal New York, @Gamer, Inside the Magic, Comic Book Resources, Zap2It, TabTimes, GameZone, Cheat Code Central, Gameshark, Gameranx, The Industry, Debonair Mag, Kombo, and others.

Micheal also spent time as the Games Editor for, and was the managing editor at GameSpot before becoming an Animal Care Manager for Wags and Walks.