The Xbox team has revealed a new initiative known as Digital Direct which will change how you install content that comes bundled with your new Xbox console.
Previously, if you purchased a new Xbox console that came bundled with games, DLC, or any kind of additional digital content, you needed to manually enter an included code in order to download the content to your new console. Admittedly, it always felt like a somewhat dated way of accessing that information.
With Digital Direct, that additional content is essentially already added to your new console. The interesting twist is that you still have the option of downloading it or not via a menu which appears when you’re setting up your console for the first time.
By choosing the “claim it” option, you will be able to download individual pieces of digital content associated with your new console. If you choose not to download the content at the time you set-up your new device, then you’ll be able to download it later. However, Microsoft does not that the bundled content can only be associated with one Microsoft account, so if you have multiple users on one system, only one of them will be able to access the content via their login.
In its simplest form, Digital Direct makes the installation of bundled content significantly easier than it has ever been. We highly doubt that anyone enjoys having to manually enter a game key in order to access bundled content, so this really does feel like the objectively better way to handle that process.
However, we highly doubt this is the last we’ll hear about this program. It seems obvious enough that this idea will carry over to Xbox Series X and any potential bundles that will be available for that console at launch, but our best guess is that this is going to be part of a much larger initiative to eliminate the necessity of game codes and to more easily associate downloaded titles with an account via the cloud.
So while this may be a relatively minor convenience for some, it’s really just another example of how Microsoft has done a brilliant job of focusing on customer quality of life features over the years. From their expanded support of backward compatible games to their Smart Delivery program, we do have to praise Microsoft for raising the bar in terms of consumer friendly innovations and policies.