Xbox dev mode isn't going anywhere, despite emulation concerns

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A Microsoft representative has said that the company has no intention of disabling developer mode for Xbox console owners.

Jason Ronald (opens in new tab), the director of program management, explained in a series of tweets that the company believes in supporting a "healthy independent app and game development community on Xbox."

His comments come after reports emerged of Xbox Series X/S users finding their developer mode accounts disabled. According to Ronald, these accounts have likely been caught up in the scheduled maintenance to clean up and disable inactive accounts.

He promises that Microsoft is working to identify and restore accounts that were still in use, and also provided an email for those who wish to restore their accounts sooner.

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Explaining dev mode

Normally, developer mode exists so people can use retail Xbox consoles as development kits to make their own games and apps. However, since technically anyone can access it, others use it to install emulators onto their consoles.

With these emulators, it's possible to not only play old and/or unavailable games, but also games from other platforms like PlayStation consoles. Some have speculated that Microsoft has been cracking down on dev mode accounts precisely to curb this practice.

Word of the disabled accounts first spread across the GBAtemp (opens in new tab) community forums. While some users are relieved by Ronald's response, others are slightly more cynical, opting to wait until the accounts are actually restored before offering any praise.

Michael Beckwith

Michael is a freelance writer with bylines at the Metro, TechRaptor, and Game Rant. A Computer Games Design and Creative Writing graduate, he's been passionate about video games since the Game Boy Color, particularly Nintendo games, with Xenoblade Chronicles being his favorite game ever. Despite everything, he's still a Sonic the Hedgehog fan.