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Microsoft drops CES keynote, booth presence from 2013

Microsoft's announced its upcoming keynote at CES next month will be the final one from the company.

It said in a written blog it'll no longer keynote the Las Vegas-based event or have a booth presence from 2013 onwards.

It will continue to be there in minor form only through meeting "partners and customers across the PC, phone and entertainment industries."

Microsoft says the decision to withdraw its keynote and booth from CES for the future was because its "product news milestones generally don’t align" with the timing of the event, normally held at the beginning of January.

"As we look at all of the new ways we tell our consumer stories – from product momentum disclosures, to exciting events like our Big Windows Phone, to a range of consumer connection points like Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft.com and our retail stores – it feels like the right time to make this transition," said corporate VP of corporate comms, Frank Shaw.

"Microsoft has enjoyed a close to 20-year working relationship with the Consumer Electronics Association – and we look forward to working with CEA for many years to come."

MS has confirmed to Engadget the event will focus on "Windows Phone and the Xbox/entertainment story," with other brands and services also being mentioned along the way, including Windows, Bing and Office among others.

"It doesn’t matter what you think, Bill"

While CES isn't primarily known for games, it was at CES nearly 11 years ago that then-Microsoft CEO Bill Gates lifted the wraps of the final model of Xbox, ten months after first announcing it at GDC 2000.

The unveil from both events can be found in great detail in part four of our retrospective look of Xbox in celebration of its tenth anniversary earlier this year here.

But since then, it has held a gaming presence in some form.

In 2010, it announced a holiday release for Kinect, then named Project Natal, DLC for Remedy thriller Alan Wake and the announcement of Xbox Game Room.

This year, it announced Avatar Kinect, 8 million Kinect units sold in its first two months and 50 million sales of Xbox 360, as well as 30 million Xbox Live subscribers at the time.

It was rumoured recently the company was set to make some sort of announcement at the show regarding the next-gen Xbox. This has gone officially unconfirmed.

CES takes place between January 10-13, while the Microsoft keynote happens on January 9.

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About the Author

Johnny Cullen


Johnny has experience at a wide range of games media outlets, having written for Eurogamer, Play Magazine, PC Gamer, GameDaily, and more. He worked at VG247 pumping out news at an astonishing rate for several years. More recently, he founded the games website PlayDiaries.