Microsoft has reportedly been disabling developer mode access on various Xbox One and Series X/S consoles. On January 4, 2022, a thread on GBAtemp.com alerted the community using the program that a user had been locked out. This resulted in other dev mode activators checking and subsequently finding out that they had been kicked from the program.
However, Jason Ronald, Director of Xbox Program Management, stated in a tweet that this was a maintenance mistake and that they are actively working on identifying and re-enabling disabled accounts.
Xbox’s dev mode began as a simple $25 devkit for Xbox One and Series X/S developers. However, when owners found out that the emulation frontend, RetroArch, could be used to emulate various consoles on Series X/S and One consoles, it became a new reason for players to adopt Xbox’s next-gen consoles.
Starting on January 4, emulation-only users of the program and others found they’d been locked out of the devkit. These locked players received the following message in an email from Microsoft:
“We have disabled the Windows and Xbox enrollment in your Microsoft Partner Center account because it did not have an active presence in the Store. For reference, see the Developer Code of Conduct which says that an active presence in the Store must be maintained.”
According to the developer code, one must actively be posting developed materials to the Store and conducting similar activities to stay in good standing with dev mode. If no such activity is performed within 90 days, Xbox will disable your account as seen with the current cases.
We have no plans to remove or disable Developer Mode on Xbox consoles. We continue to believe in and support a healthy independent app and game development community on Xbox.
— Jason Ronald (@jronald) January 5, 2022
Thankfully, Xbox has confirmed that this was a simple error as part of a regularly scheduled maintenance to clean up inactive accounts. The company is now working on reactivating these accounts. Jason Ronald states, “Once an account has been reactivated, users will be able to reenable Developer Mode on Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S consoles.”
You can contact ReportApp@microsoft.com if your account is among those that were falsely disabled.
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