tl;dr version:

I haven't connected my Xbox One to the Internet for years, and it still plays all my old Kinect games perfectly. But I have a new game (NHL 2021) that won't install unless I update it. My question to you Arqade readers is: if I connect my Xbox One to the Internet again to update it, will the update make things worse by making the Xbox One stop working unless I keep reconnecting to the Internet? Has anyone here tried disconnecting the Xbox One from the Internet, and found that they couldn't use it?

Longer version of my post as follow-up:

I love my Xbox One, which we bought many years ago for its Kinect so we could stay physically active at home. I have a handful of games, most of which use the Kinect (it came with Kinect Sports Rivals, Dance Central Spotlight, and then I bought Kung-Fu for Kinect and Fru).

The Xbox One hasn't been connected to the Internet for years, which is the way I want it. Once, about a year after I bought it, I did connect, and after it updated itself, our profiles and records for Kinect Sports Rivals disappeared, and we had to restart our achievements. But that's not the main reason I separate it from the Internet. The real reason is that I end up updating to a version that forces me to stay online and keep updating.

By nature, computers do repetitive tasks exactly as instructed, and a working computer should continue working forever unless something changes (memory fills up, or one of its chips finally breaks down after decades). But this means that, once you buy a computer system which does everything you need, you never need to spend any more money on it.

Of course, the computer industry continues to make money because advances in technology and the way we do things mean that a computer syste will no longer "do everything I need" because the needs change. But the computer itself ... think about the last computer/phone/device you replaced with a newer model. That older computer ... exactly what does it no longer do that it did before? Nothing. (Unless the software stopped working because "it's time to upgrade", or "everyone uses 4G now so 3G is too slow for me" etc.)

But what if people's needs don't change? There was a slowdown in the statistics of the PC industry a number of years ago, exactly for this reason. Windows 7 was good enough, and computers worked well enough, and we users could coast for a long time. The result was that people didn't upgrade to Windows 10. So Microsoft forced people to upgrade (e.g. popping up a window in the middle of the night that said, "Okay, I'm giving you freedom of choice to cancel this automatic upgrade by clicking stop before 5am, ok?")

Gradually now, it has become accepted that software will stop working after a while, even though this is just artificially designed "planned obsolescence". You have to keep updating programs such as WhatsApp, not because it becomes a security risk or people have moved on to better protocols, but just because it's programmed not to work after a certain date.

I don't want that to happen to my Xbox One, which currently doesn't know it's supposed to stop working after a while. I am afraid that if I update, the Xbox OS will be updated so that I won't be able to stay off the Internet indefinitely.

On the other hand, it refuses to install NHL 2021 unless I upgrade. It's not that much of a loss for me, but I'd like to be able to install it, and perhaps a few other games for now, and then I'd be happy to take the Xbox offline again for another few years.

So, I would like to draw on the collective wisdom of the StackExchange (Arqade) community to ask: if I connect my Xbox One online to update, will it get my Xbox One addicted to updating?

(I tried posting this to Reddit but for some reason it wouldn't let me.)

  • 3
    Usually when an online app like WhatsApp stops working until you update, that's because of API changes on the backend, not because of a planned obsolescence timer.
    – Kevin
    Jan 26, 2022 at 0:20
  • 4
    One of the reasons companies try to get you to update is that it makes technical support easier for them. If you call technical support and it turns out that you haven't updated in 4 years, it's entirely possible that the issue you're having was fixed in one of the updates you never downloaded. Even if it isn't, the support person might have a frustrating time digging through archived technical manuals to find the procedures that are right for the software version you're using.
    – Kevin
    Jan 26, 2022 at 0:23
  • Hey @Kevin, I'm interested in your argument about Whatsapp stopping working because the "API changes on the backend". Could you please elaborate? Or maybe should I ask a separate question elsewhere? If yes and you could point me to the most appropriate site, I'd highly appreciate it.
    – LoremIpsum
    Jan 26, 2022 at 2:10
  • 2
    Should this question be trimmed? Most of it isn't directly related to the question, and reads like a forum post Jan 26, 2022 at 5:49
  • 1
    @TankorSmash I agree, there's a lot of unnecessary content in Reddit-style
    – pinckerman
    Jan 26, 2022 at 10:07

1 Answer 1


The Xbox OS that original Xbox One uses is still the same OS that the new generation of Series X|S consoles are using(which is probably the OS update that NHL 21 would be asking for). They can be played offline without any issue.

However, Kinect has been deprecated. The Series X|S are pretty incompatible, whether an OS Update solidified that or just hardware (the consoles do not have built in ports) is unknown. It may still function, but Xbox/Microsoft no longer support it and have it placed firmly in "end of life", so if an update does "break" it, because it's not tested for compatibility anymore. They don't have any obligation to fix it.

  • Thanks for the info! But even with the same OS, will it get tweaked so it requires an update? Have people had experience NOT updating for a long time, and the Xbox One still works? (with the games already installed -- I understand it might require an update if newer games are installed) On the other hand, I am not that worried about the Kinect not working, because Just Dance 2022 came out for the Xbox One Kinect -- surprising, since most other games no longer use the Kinect. But the existence of this game means the Kinect must still be working, if not updated for much longer.
    – kwantum
    Jan 26, 2022 at 6:19
  • apologies for not accepting the answer earlier
    – kwantum
    Mar 22, 2022 at 20:20

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