Microsoft will release a firmware update for Xbox One called "day one patch" on Nov. 22 to enable backwards compatibility.
Xbox One doesn’t require a permanent Internet connection, but the console will be virtually unusable if the user doesn’t install the new firmware – so called “day one patch” — that will be released on November 22. Users can only play disc-based games after installing the patch.
Albert Penello, Senior director of product management, has confirmed in an interview with Engadget that the “day one patch” is mandatory only if you play Xbox 360 games on the new console.
As for the backward compatibility, it would be theoretically possible to stream Xbox 360 games, but the solution is hardly feasible for various reasons. If you don’t have broadband network, you have two options: don’t buy the Xbox One or seek help of a friend as it will take a time between 15 to 20 minutes and the new console will only work after installing the latest firmware. In fact, it’s shipped with an old operating system, and even you can’t play disc-based titles and use apps.
Basically, the Xbox One will be an expensive ornament without the patch. Even users who purchase the PlayStation 4 will have to install a patch to add support for DVD and Blu-ray, but the games will still work.
In certain circumstances, the Xbox One cloud streaming works really awesome.
The Xbox One is based on completely different hardware architecture than the Xbox 360, so it’s impossible to play with the titles developed for the old console. The alternative is cloud streaming, but Penello admitted that such a solution is quite problematic. Microsoft can’t control the quality of the service because the user experience depends on the Internet connection, and only in the presence of a very fast network, the new console would be able to stream Xbox 360 games. Microsoft doesn’t want to risk getting complaints for no fault of an “experimental” offering.
Sony use Gaikai to distribute the old games on the PS4 instead. “I’ll be really interested to see how our friends in the Bay Area [at PlayStation] deal with this problem.” Penello said to Polygon.
Xbox One is scheduled to launch in the United States and 13 countries on November 22.