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ZDNet: Will Microsoft lose the living room [to Sony]?

Sep 27, 1999, 18:07 (8 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Robert Lemos)

"Microsoft may have finally found the recipe to capture the couch potato... The key ingredient is games. The big software maker is busy putting the pieces together to make Windows CE a premier gaming platform.

Ultimately, the idea is to have multifunction set-top boxes that not only can play games, but surf the Net, control home entertainment, and play DVD movies. There's only one hitch: Sony (NYSE:SNE) seems to have beaten Microsoft (Nasdaq:MSFT) to the punch.

When the Japanese consumer electronics maker announced details of its heavily anticipated PlayStation 2 two weeks ago, its plans went far beyond just another game machine. 'If Sony makes it out with a cable-ready version of their PlayStation 2 before Microsoft comes out with a Windows CE-based gaming box, Microsoft is in trouble,' said Jeremy Schwartz, game market analyst at industry watcher Forrester Research Inc...."

"with hardware specs far ahead of the competition's -- 10 times faster than Sega's Dreamcast and three times faster than Pentium III, claims Sony -- PlayStation 2 is the game console to beat. But more important, Sony execs used the announcement to admit something they'd previously denied: The electronics maker is aiming the PlayStation 2 at becoming the new household entertainment center."

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