Fanatec SDK support for Xbox One/Series X/S

Can someone enlight me and tell me what the story is on Fanatec SDK support for Xbox One/Series X/S. We all know the discussion regarding full button support on Xbox and the pointing finger towards MS or game developers. But other manufacturers seem to get their stuff working on Xbox with full button support (Logitech to name one) Does a game manufacturer, lets say Codemasters, need a specific SDK to support a specific Fanatec wheel on Xbox? And if so, does MS have a saying in this or is this something between Fanatec and Codemasters in this example. Just trying to point it out as simple as possible, since none of the involved parties seems to be willing to explain what is realy going on.

Hopefully there is someone out there who can explain in simple English what the nature of this ongoing problem is. Thanks in advance.

Comments

  • simple as that, XBOX OS only supports a number of inputs. I highly doubt that Logitech and Thrustmaster have wheels that could potentially support up to 64 inputs on one steering wheel.

  • edited January 13

    I don’t think this is true anymore - or certainly Logitech have found a way around it.

    Please see my recent post on the subject: https://forum.fanatec.com/discussion/22003/xbox-fanatec-wheel-button-support#latest

    In this post I describe that Logitech has been able to get all buttons and functions (rev lights included) of their G923 wheel working on Xbox - there are many more inputs than that of the Xbox controller.

    I’ve also heard from Fanatec that their wheels not being fully supported is a Microsoft issue (and it might well have been) but clearly that is not true anymore especially with the above knowledge.

    Agreed, getting 67 inputs may be a stretch, but there is capability to get more than the number of Xbox controller inputs supported.

    Do you know if Fanatec developing a SDK to increase support? My understanding is Logitech developed one to get the G923 fully supported on Xbox.

  • G923 has 14 buttons... so no wonder all buttons are supported on XBOX then. If revleds are supported by the G923 now there should be no reasoon why Fanatec couldn't do it aswell.

  • And what about keyboard support, which is present on Xbox and supported by Project Cars and Assetto Corsa. Codemasters supports that too. Keyboard keys can been seen as buttons or am I wrong here? If so, could it be possible to program around the lack of inputs on Xbox and simulate keyboard inputs instead of controller inputs?

  • But in the end Microsoft still controls all software on the Xbox. So if Microsoft doesn’t want to spent the time on the improvement of Fanatec support by updating to a newer SDK or what ever needs to happen to improve it, nothing will happen.

    The Logitech is maybe better supported because it has a bigger market share on the Xbox and Microsoft sees more in added support for that. Or it was a lot easier to implement. Or Logitech spent a lot of money to get better support. Microsoft maybe doesn’t see a lot of use for a better Fanatec support because it’s sort of a niche on the Xbox with a very low market share. Or it’s maybe to complex to implement. Or they just don’t want to spent all the time and money to improve it, because they still have higher priority tasks that need to be done first. Who knows...

    Also Fanatec probably already asked multiple times to improve it and maybe even continuously supplies a new SDK or something and/or updated documention so that Microsoft can improve. But if Microsoft keeps saying no, nothing will happen.

    In the end everything is speculation and only Fanatec and Microsoft know the real reasons. If they don’t talk nobody will know why support is not upgraded.

    Xbox is also not like the PC where Fanatec can take control and manage it on there own. For the Xbox they need Microsoft or else it will not be included.

  • I think you are missing the key consideration in your response Sascha: many of us have been told by Fanatec that MS are limiting inputs to the same number as on the standard Xbox controller i.e. this is some “hard limit” that cannot be overcome. 

    And I don’t think it’s right to downplay the big picture to the actual specifics (14 vs 67 inputs): This is big news to anyone who has been given this reasoning as an excuse. We can only judge on the information provided -  If something is nuanced then Fanatec should provide the proper reasoning, not some halfway explanation.

    When you boil it down, it is irrelevant whether it is 1 or 100 extra buttons/dials/revlights above this MS “hard limit” that Logitech have gotten working. All that matters is Logitech have been able to overcome this “hard limit” Fanatec are seemingly unable/unwilling to overcome.

    If we flip your comment about the G923 only having 14 buttons: in addition to the already supported inputs, are you saying Formula v2 Xbox users don’t want a few more buttons, a dial and revleds to work, if the remaining inputs on the wheel do not? i.e. all or nothing (at the standard Xbox limit)? I think you could bet your house safe in the knowledge that existing Fanatec Xbox users would 100% bite your hand off to get the same level of button/dial/revleds supported as the G923, compared to what we get now.

  • edited January 14

    It’s been said somewhere on the codemaster forum that there is no Fanatec Xbox SDK, and currently the wheels are being supported via the standard MS issued SDK which is limited to... (you guessed it) standard Xbox controller inputs. It never even occurred to me that this was a possibility. Maybe it is correct (my linked post has had no responses to confirm or deny this).

    With Logitech achieving what they did, what is clear now is MS may not limit inputs (up to a point) if the wheel manufacturer develops an SDK which is then approved. Leads me on to my next point, IF Fanatec had created the SDK and it’s in the approval cycle, why wouldn’t Fanatec just say “MS haven’t approved our SDK”, rather than giving the “MS limits inputs” line? Also if it’s in the approval cycle, I’m sure there are agreements which dictate timeframes.

    Something doesn’t quite add up.

    As you rightly say, we are all speculating. But that is what will happen unless Fanatec talk. They should be honest about what the problem is and what they intend to do about it - it’s long overdue (we are their customers at the end of the day). In the meantime, we can certainly ask the questions to Fanatec to get some movement on this in any case - some have done already (like me), but not in enough numbers to make an impact.

  • It would be really nice if Fanatec could give us some information about this point. 

    I bought a base that supports Xbox and Playstation, I'm considering replacing my xbox one, a clear answer from Fanatec would allow me to make my choice. 

  • Absolutely agree.  I am in the same position (as I think many indeed are).

    However, I do not think Fanatec will come forward without some prodding.

    Key to this is enough people questioning Fanatec on the following;

    • Previous statements issued by Fanatec on the subject point to MS limiting inputs to that of Xbox controller - does this hold true even if Fanatec develop their own SDK?
    • Logitech G923 has managed to get more inputs supported on Xbox than the standard Xbox controller (as well as rev lights and a dial) - if MS do limit inputs to the same number as on the Xbox controller, how were they able to get all of the features supported (including the rev lights)?
    • Logitech developed a SDK to support the G923 on Xbox. Can Fanatec confirm if they have developed Xbox SDK’s for their wheels, and if so, what is the reason they do not work?
    • Now that Logitech have been able to make it work, what can and will you do to follow suit?

    Given this a relatively recent development, many users to do not know about the Logitech advancements (and therefore potential for Fanatec), so not enough people have asked Fanatec about it - I encourage you to ask!

    If anything, the response (or non-response) might help clarify in your mind the appetite for getting the issue sorted. Then maybe you will have the answers you need to make your decision.

    P.S. Apologies if some of my posts are repetitive (and long). I’m not sure which of my posts you’ve read so am trying to get the information out there to as many people as I can.

    P.P.S. I would also encourage you to spread this news to other effected users. They should know what has been achieved. We need more people to increase the volume to Fanatec!

  • But is there any info that confirms Logitech made an SDK?

    Maybe it was just a bag of money and some documention, the rest was done by Microsoft.

    But yes Fanatec should have more information. But maybe they are not allowed to tell anything because of signed NDA’s linked to Xbox support.

  • edited January 15

    Regarding the Logitech SDK, see here, in the screenshot and link to the codemaster forum: https://forum.fanatec.com/discussion/12238/f1-2020-xbox-one-formula-v2-wheel-led-not-functioning-and-buttons-not-mappable#latest

    That might not be “categoric” proof, but how else could it be achieved? I’m not an expert, but I see all their console stuff the same way as stuff generally works on PC;

    • The hardware manufacturer creates the driver
    • Game devs can use these to make hardware work with their games

    In essence, that’s a SDK right - unless I’m missing something?

    Obviously Logitech are a bigger player, so have more clout, and that could be a possibility.

    Regarding the NDA, I’d assume most software processes relating to 3rd party console hardware are similar (hardware manufacturer creates SDK, jumps through some hoops, pays some money, game console maker approves SDK), so nothing “really” to hide, but fair point - legal agreements and all that.

    Thinking about it a bit more, if there is a NDA, Fanatec have probably come close to “crossing the line” (and done MS a disservice) by saying it’s MS’ fault, particularly if it is incumbent on Fanatec to produce the SDK to get their fully products working.

    Perhaps we’ll never know the truth, but I do believe it’s still worth trying to find it.

  • Goodmorning fellow Fanatec users and devs,

    Regarding the Xbox compatibility issues, I've contacted Fanatec and MS twice about the issue.

    Fanatec says that Microsoft needs to update the devcode in order to use SDK and MS says that Fanatec gear is third party hardware and therefore they are not able to update any code.

    In this case it doesn't make any sense when Logitech was allowed and able to apply changes and have full button and LED support. Which means it is possible!

    @Fanatec: Can you look into this and give us some straight awnsers? There is a whole bunch of people who invested a lot of money to upgrade their experience, but in this case it's barely an improvement compared to Thrustmaster and Logitech (Who fixed the issue and might be a better choice at this moment).


    Please give us value for the money we paid 👌

  • Thanks for your comment Marvin, and you are correct; it doesn't make any sense. Before the time that you needed a specific wheelbase and steering wheel the SDK were made in order to use your specific wheel with it's specific functions. So what has changed? Straight answer is needed, but I doubt we will get any. Even the community manager, who I have asked for an answer in PM doesn't respond. It's a pity since there are very interesting wheels coming out and I still believe Fanatec is a great brand, but this doesn't help.

  • Armin HabermannArmin Habermann Member, Administrator

    Is it now 100% confimed that Logitech can use such extended Features on XBO? I have not seen any video whatsoever. Would be great to have some evidence.

    Do you have evidence for that:

    "MS says that Fanatec gear is third party hardware and therefore they are not able to update any code"

    With this Fanatec can challenge MS since Logitech is 3rd party hardware also.

  • Hello Armin,

    I'm awaiting confirmation from Logitech. One of there employees (presumable) responded on the Codemasters forum that Logitech is using an extra SDK to make this happen. I know this respone from MS, but its unclear to me what code they are talking about. I will push again towards the Logitech response to get more information.

  • Hi Forum,

    I'm new to the sim racing world, and recently purchased the CSL Elite base + Formula v2 wheel for my Xbox Series S. My intent is to eventually upgrade to PC based system and a direct drive system, but thought this would be a good start for me with my current Xbox to get familiar and dive into this sim world and get a good sense. After investing over $2000 into a full rig, I'm realizing the limitations with the Xbox compatibility and LED functions, and wanted to chime in another voice here and say that Fanatec really should make it known on all "Xbox compatible" devices, that LED functions and button limitations apply. Now I don't mean...bury it in the fine print at the bottom that no one ever reads...I mean make it a disclaimer before purchasing or adding to your cart. This is a simple adjustment they could make to save a lot of the negative feedback they're receiving about Xbox compatibility. It's a bit of a small bait and switch, hiding behind the new improved upgrades (only applicable to PC) that they want to promote and market, but never mentioning the big issue with a huge community of Xbox users. The Fanatec products look top notch and I plan to continue using them, but Xbox users have a legitimate gripe about the false sense of upgrades they think they're paying for.

  • edited January 29

    It is confirmed (by me), with a slight caveat: (as I understand it from the Codemaster forum here https://forums.codemasters.com/topic/59231-logitech-g923-button-support-for-f1-201920-on-xbox/) the game developer needs to use the SDK created by Logitech to support the G923 functionality (older wheels do not apply).

    As explained in my post here: https://forum.fanatec.com/discussion/22003/xbox-fanatec-wheel-button-support#latest prior to owning Fanatec gear, I had a G923 (which I sold to fund my Fanatec purchase). I normally play F1 on my Xbox and was frustrated the extra buttons and whatnot didn’t work on this game. When I had the G923, I thought it was a game issue (hardware manufacturers always make the software to get things working right?) and assumed the game devs chose not to use certain features of the wheel. I wanted to try out Trueforce and heard that it and the other features of the wheel were supported on ACC and GRID, so I bought both to check it out. Certain features on the wheel worked: Trueforce worked on both, and on ACC all buttons, the dial and rev lights worked, on GRID the additional buttons (+/- buttons, dial, dial button, RSB and LSB) did not work but the rev lights did.

    Although I knew there were button limitations prior to buying in December 2020, I did not realise how much of a breakthrough this was until I sold the G923, bought my Fanatec gear and heard from them that “MS limits inputs to the same as a standard Xbox controller”.

    If I had known then what I know now, I would have taken a video to prove it (although it doesn’t really make a difference, given I am the evidence).

    I’m not saying the Fanatec reasoning given to me was not true at some point in time, but it definitely wasn’t true at the time I asked, because the G923 proved otherwise. When I explained this to them, I received a corporate response that they cannot disclose plans and procedures, will forward the info to the relevant department and that (the support person at least) hopes that full support will be achieved on Xbox soon.

    Given Logitech has made it work, we need Fanatec to explain what the situation is, what the issues are, and most importantly, what they intend to do in a honest and open way - that can only be achieved if enough people ask the question direct to Fanatec.

  • Thanks Troy for your comment and I think this is a genuine and legit comment. Upon the introduction of the more sofisticated wheels with up to 60+ possible programmable positions Thomas stated on several occassions and suppressed the expectation that support from Microsoft was eminent and that Fanatec was in constant negotiation to make it happen. This expectation was lowered as time passed and the finger was pointed at Microsoft and game developers.

    So at this stage it is necessary to manage expectations, clearify what the reasons are that full button support can't be implemented and what is needed to make it happen (Microsoft, game developers, Fanatec) and clearly point out on the website that there are limitations (not possible limitations).

  • Hello Armin, Logitech just confirmed that by using the exra SDK functionality initially not supported bij Xbox becomes available. The game devs need to implement it in game. My strong believe is that this knowledge was known all along but probably a costly matter to do for every specific wheel. Fanatec, the ball is in your corner!

  • Check the link and read the comment from Logitech I also have the conformation email directly to me

  • Seems like this post is abandonned by Fanatec, even now there is sufficient proof that an extra SDK can do the trick. Not surprised however that there is no response. We are pulling on this dead horse for two years now. Very dissapointing.

  • I’ve reached out to Fanatec to show support for this “movement “ towards compatibility. It’s such a shame that this is a issue lingering over 2 years. I’ve been using the thrustmaster Ferrari F1 wheel and all the buttons work on that wheel. I understand that’s nowhere near 64 buttons, but for example, the rotating thumb dials on my thrustmaster work. One goes up and down, the other functions as a left and right. It’s very effective while driving for fuel mix and navigating the menu or talking to the pit crew etc. How is it that these thumb dials have zero functionality on the Fanatec?? LEDs don’t work, fine, fix it down the road, but to not have the option for these dials to navigate left, right and up, down, seems ridiculous as that should still fall under the Xbox controller capabilities. Now that the new consoles are out I hope Fanatec has more incentive to resolve the issue for us.

  • Hello Thomas,

    Totally agree with you. Recently, it became more and more clear that it is not Microsoft being responsible for the fact that all the extra functionality doesn't work on the Fanatec hardware. It relies on cooperation between hardware development and game developers. Logitech stated that they use an extra SDK, next to the standard SDK, and this way all functionality on their wheel can be used, rev lights work etc. As stated before, the ball is now in Fanatec's corner and after Armin came online asking for visual proof (Fanatec's favorite oneliner) I was kind of positiv. However, once the proof was given it once again remained silent. News from Fanatec is eagerly awaited.

  • Still no response, despite several PM's to Fanatec's Community Manager, to Armin Habermann and Thomas himself. No one seems willing to respond. Pitty.

  • Hi guys, still awaiting progress and any news. I've been playing ACC on my Series X for a while now and need to change some settings while driving in order to achieve better laptimes.

    I have a formula v2 wheel, so lots of buttons, rotary switches etc. but only the Xbox mapping works... such a waste and I can't use the rotary switches and so on...

    Please make it happen Fanatec!

  • givi g this thread a bump in case it’s still alive. @Fanatec, would be so good if you could do something about this. I want to use the functionality that makes your products better and i can only game on the X box series x. Fanatec needs to stop the blame game and do what you would expect when you buy a product that is “fully compatible” with XBox. I understand that sometimes dealing with large corporations like Microsoft can be a real challenge but going the extra mile for your customers will be rewarded.

  • I know I’m late to the party, but are there any updates on this ?

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