Ballmer blames 360 shortages on chip supply

"We're doing our best," Microsoft chief executive tells <i>Ottawa Citizen</i>, says that new shipments are going out each week.

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It's no secret that the supply of Xbox 360s in North America has been outstripped by the demand for the new unit so far, and Microsoft is under pressure to explain why.

In a Q&A session with The Ottawa Citizen published yesterday, Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer responded to the notion that the company is fabricating the shortages to increase perceived demand for the system.

"In these new consumer electronics devices based on new chips, there's always the question of what yield will you get out of the manufacturing process of the new chip," Ballmer told the paper. "We're getting a little less, but not much less than the yields we expected, and we know that the yields we expected will probably outrun supply. But we decided to go ahead and launch rather than wait until post-Christmas and get a few million units out into the hands of users."

Ballmer also reiterated the oft-repeated company line, noting "all stores are getting new units each week" as the company attempts to meet demand. "We're doing our best," Ballmer said.

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