Microsoft has announced that Xbox Video content will not be available on Windows Phone 7 and Zune devices from February 2014, as the company works to push more attention on the Windows Phone 8 platform. Microsoft notified users by email over the weekend, which is sure to upset some, considering it covers purchased content too.
"This update will allow us to more quickly and efficiently add the highest quality video content to the Xbox Video service," Microsoft wrote. "As a result, beginning in late February 2014, any Xbox Video content you own as of then, will no longer be playable through the Zune PC client, Zune devices, or Windows Phone 7 devices. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.”
Microsoft suggests users instead watch their purchased video content on its next-generation console, Xbox 360, Windows 8 and 8.1 PC, or Windows Phone 8. Microsoft didn't offer any word on reimbursement for Windows Phone 7 users who will lose their purchases. We can't decide whether to blame the Xbox One or Microsoft just being greedy.
It might make sense to phase out Windows Phone 7 users, but you have to take into account that the Nokia Lumia 900 with Windows Phone 7 was released only in April 2012. This leaves customers on two-year contract still using the device on a daily basis.
A push for a better Xbox Video service from Microsoft comes on the heels of the Xbox One launch. Xbox Video was introduced in autumn 2012 alongside Xbox Music, rebranding Zune's video functionality as Microsoft's answer to the PlayStation Network, iTunes Store, Google Play, and Amazon Instant Video.