It's no secret that Microsoft has had problems cranking out enough Xbox 360s to satisfy demand for the system in North America and Europe. But even as would-be customers fretted about how to get their hands on one of the coveted consoles for the holiday season, the company stood by its projections to ship 3 million units worldwide in the first 90 days after the system's debut.
That was called into question this morning, as a report on the Financial Times Web site today quoted Xbox corporate VP of worldwide marketing and publishing Peter Moore talking about the company's ongoing supply troubles.
"Nothing's perfect," Moore told the Financial Times. "You've got a complex piece of hardware that's got 1,700 different parts in it, every now and again the line will slow down because something's happened and there'll be a component that didn't make it that morning…That's just the way of the beast, particularly when you are ramping up factories from ground zero all the way up to full capacity."
The story, "Microsoft to miss Xbox target," points out that that Microsoft didn't reiterate the 90-day target at the Consumer Electronics Show, choosing instead to tout a goal of 4.5 million to 5.5 million units by the end of its fiscal year in June. It was reported by a number of sites as an admission from Microsoft that it would not reach its previous milestone.
The only problem is, that's not what the Financial Times reported. In the article, penned by Chris Nuttall, it merely says that the company "is now expected to miss its target."
Nuttall told GameSpot he received no such admission that Microsoft had admitted defeat on the 90-day target from Moore. Nuttall said he asked Moore if the switch in focus to the end-of-fiscal-year projection meant the company had given up on the 90-day goal, and that the Xbox honcho dodged the question without actually denying it.
The number of 360s shipped worldwide should get a boost just after that 90-day window closes, as Microsoft has announced that it will launch the system in Korea on February 24, followed a week later by March 2 launches in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore. And while it hasn't released a date for the Chinese launch of the system, Microsoft has said it is targeting a 2006 launch for the 360 in that region as well.