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Microsoft has no intentions of giving up on the console market

Dean Takahashi of A+E Interactive recently had the chance to sit down and chat with Microsoft's COO, Kevin Turner. Turner, who has previously worked through the ranks of Wal-Mart and was once the president of Sam's Club, has a lot on his plate as of now at Microsoft and oversees products ranging from Windows Vista to the XBOX 360.

In the interview, Turner discusses a number of issues including Microsoft's broad scope for its "digital lifestyle" initiative which includes products like the XBOX 360 and Zune as well the company's current hemorrhaging of money in the games division:

q: What do you think as a business person. These guys started up the business. They anticipated losing money. They did lose billions in the first round. When you think of those numbers, it's so high stakes. You either come out of it like Sony, or come out of it sinking billions into a crazy business. For a business, that can be very scary.

a: In those four pillars, it's important for us to have multiple pillars for growth. We think we are uniquely positioned to be able to invest what it takes to be successful in areas like entertainment and gaming. People forget. Steve reminds me it to seven, eight, or nine years before Windows was profitable. People forget that. We're in it for the long term. This is a company committed to invest for the long term. We would like to make money quickly. But that's not what changes the world. That's not what innovation allows you to do. Regardless of what you look at, it takes a lot of years. This is a company that is committed to sticking to things that we believe in. Certainly, this is a space we believe in.

Microsoft has a lot invested in the XBOX brand and it has a lot of cash on hand to drag it along for quite some time. The original XBOX was a moderate sales success (despite the large monetary losses for Microsoft), while the current XBOX 360 is coming slower out of the gate than its predecessor. Whether that's because customers are waiting to see what the PlayStation 3 offers or because the XBOX 360 doesn't yet have that "killer app" remains to be seen. Regardless, the next two months should be an interesting time for Microsoft as we should see a number of new peripherals released for the XBOX 360 including the Wireless Racing Wheel and the external HD DVD drive. And there's also that tiny little game that no one's ever heard of: Gears of War or something like that…





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