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Microsoft unveils XBox plans

But won’t hit UK until next year

Unable to produce Playstation 2 video game consoles in the heroic volumes consumers demanded, Sony disappointed its fans this Christmas.

Microsoft is taking steps to avoid the same fate with its Xbox game console. The software giant has confirmed plans to launch Xbox in North America and Japan in or around September of 2001 but Europe won’t see the product until the first quarter of 2002.

Xbox will be a game console-PC hybrid of sorts, with an 8GB hard drive, Pentium III processor, and Ethernet connectivity. Xbox will play DVD, as Playstation 2 does.

Xbox will be "competitively priced," but Microsoft marketing manager David Hufford would not reveal a specific price for the system, specific quantities available at launch or expected sales. But he said that Sony's shortfall was instructional. "We've certainly learned a lot from watching from the sidelines."


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