Microsoft UK and Ireland boss Neil Thompson has denied it has engineered shortage reports of Kinect ahead of the Christmas retail period.
“Anyone who actually works in the business of producing new technology, especially hardware technology, will know that these things are never managed,” Thompson told GI in a joint interview with Xbox UK boss Stephen McGill.
“Everyone else loves to think that they’re managed, but they will know it’s not. It’s a function of coming to market with a brand new innovation and you have to scale up.”
“The choices you always have are: do we launch in November or do we wait until February, March when we could hit some bigger launch numbers but then we miss Christmas. So you’re always in this fine balance, saying ‘well, we want to give people the product as soon as we can, but you can’t switch on the manufacturing like water.’ It takes time to scale.”
McGill chimed in, adding: “I think another thing to remember is that often consumer electronics companies and games companies have staggered their launches by territory by some quite considerable margins. With Kinect we launched around the world in three weeks. That was a huge task. No region is being penalised.”
Microsoft announced last week it had reached the half-way point of its yearly target of hitting 5 million Kinect sales, confirming it had sold 2.5 million units in 25 days.