Microsoft So Happy It Didn't Make a Handheld Console

Illustration for article titled Microsoft So Happy It Didnt Make a Handheld Console

Once upon a time, people thought Microsoft was going to enter the handheld console market. It hasn't! Maybe, it will one day, but for the time being, the company is sitting on the sidelines. Any regrets? Says Microsoft's Shane Kim:


I'm very happy we didn't get into it, because launching a handheld platform is like launching another Xbox 360. You have to be fully committed, as an organisation, from a resource standpoint, to doing that. Frankly we've got a lot on our plate with Xbox 360 and Xbox Live. We don't have any experience in that space. Our content assets don't naturally lend themselves to driving success in that particular market.

So we're happy to let Sony and Nintendo slog it out. I do think mobile is probably the more important platform in the future, and the number of Windows mobile devices and hardware that's capable of running Windows mobile in the future is really a compelling opportunity, and one where we don't have to worry about launching a new hardware platform too.

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Or dealing with that platform's hardware troubles. Zing!
Shane Kim Interview [Eurogamer] [Pic]

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Microsoft's going to release a handheld, but not till they can firm up their marketshare of the home consoles much better. Right now fighting a war on two fronts like that, both of them with Nintendo would be something they simply couldn't handle very well and the red ink would make the current Xbox losses look like a drop in the bucket.

You can bet their ass that they've learned from the current fight on what to do and what not to do when it comes to their own hand held unit. For one, they will pull out every measure they can to kill or deal a harsh blow to folks who simply want to torrent the latest titles, but not pay for them (PSP/DS) and they darn well know that a portable system launched over the 200 dollar mark is the kiss of slow death.

When Microsoft feels they can launch a system that will provide a proper 1 on 1 match against Nintendo's offerings or beat them outright, they will. They do not want the current spot Sony has and they know second that in Japan, they don't have the support Sony has.