Xbox has confirmed that it’s removed a DRM hurdle on the Xbox Series X that relates to playing original Xbox One games.
DRM, or digital rights management, refers to the online process of verifying that you actually own a license to the content you’re attempting to access. On Series X, this means that the console will no longer need to run a DRM check if you’re playing a disc version of an Xbox One game. Xbox engineering lead Eden Marie confirmed the quiet rollout of the feature on Twitter.
Yes, this is true since the 2206 update. We examined data since Series X|S launch & determined the online compatibility check isn't needed in the vast majority of cases for Xbox One discs. Some games may still need to be updated online after install to ensure the best experience.
— Eden Marie (@neonepiphany) September 19, 2022
This is a notable change, as Microsoft has been criticized for aggressively enforcing DRM on consoles, as it requires an online connection to play many games. Naturally, this would render them unplayable in the event of, say, an internet outage.
On Twitter, Marie explained that Microsoft determined that the online compatibility check “isn’t needed in the vast majority of cases for Xbox One discs.” However, she added that “some games may still need to be updated online after install to ensure the best experience.”
Of course, none of this applies to the Xbox Series S, which is a digital-only console. It remains to be seen whether Xbox will lift some of the other DRM-related restrictions in the months to come.