Jump to content

Microsoft's award-winning Adaptive Controller was nearly cut from funding


Recommended Posts


Microsoft has made a few choices over recent years that have really pushed the idea of "gaming for everyone". Game Pass is one of the cheapest ways to instantly get a library full of great games, including our 2021 GOTY Valheim, and more recently Persona 5 Royal. The Microsoft Adaptive controller is another great example of how the company is working to make gaming more accessible to all, and it almost never happened.

As reported by The Verge, Microsoft nearly cut the Adaptive Controller during development. When funding cuts were being made to projects, the now widely acclaimed Adaptive Controller was close to the chopping block. The only reason it ended up seeing the light of day was because of how hard people working within the company fought for it to stick around.

"There was a point in time when the Xbox controller that was designed for accessibility was on the cut list," Microsoft's COO and CVP for Windows and Devices Robin Seiler told The Verge. "Across teams, Xbox and Surface, we said, 'No this is actually important for the world. This isn't about revenue or brand positioning; it’s just important for people to be able to play games if they want to'".

Given the concept rose from a hackathon project within Microsoft, it's clear the Adaptive Controller was important to people. Pushing to keep it going despite budget cuts is a great effort to ensure that more people can interact more efficiently with their devices, for gaming and other projects. 

Perfect peripherals


(Image credit: Colorwave)

Best gaming mouse: the top rodents for gaming
Best gaming keyboard: your PC's best friend...
Best gaming headset: don't ignore in-game audio

It's notable that Microsoft has since leaned pretty hard on the marketing with the Adaptive Controller, and has won multiple awards for innovation since. Hopefully we won't see any more big-wig attempts to stop this accessibility train in the interest of cost-cutting. 

That doesn't seem to be where the next big hurdle for Microsoft's Adaptive tech is coming from. Instead, it's ideas. We recently spoke to the Adaptive Controller's inventor, Bryce Johnson, who although happy with the direction of the tech isn't too sure what to do next. It's led to some weird products coming out that claim to be accessible, but don't really offer much use just trying to cash in on the market.

Still, it's great to see accessibility come to the forefront of thinking when it comes to developing new hardware. Microsoft has already expanded into general computing devices with the Surface Adaptive Accessories and even Nintendo was revealed to be looking into its own adaptive controller. There's also a way you can help 3D print controller mods for people who need them.

View the full article

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines Privacy Policy.