Microsoft’s new CEO wants to sell Xbox. That’s what the headlines said earlier this month, right? Well, not exactly.
“I have no intent to do anything different with Xbox than we are doing today,” said CEO Satya Nadella in an interview this week. At a glance, it might look like he’s flip-flopping, but it’s not quite as simple as that.
This all started when a Fox Business interviewer asked founder Bill Gates if he would support the new CEO spinning off some of Microsoft’s less PC-centric businesses.
This is a question Gates had to answer carefully. The question wasn’t about Xbox or Bing, but about his feelings on the new CEO. Any visible lack of confidence from the founder in the new CEO would look bad for the company. Whether Gates is interested in selling off any of those businesses is irrelevant, but he tried to address the question gracefully without insulting the interviewer.
“I’m sure Satya and the team will look at that, and, you know, it’s up to them. But we’re going to have an overall gaming strategy, so it’s not as obvious as you might think,” Gates said at the time. That seems like a nice way to say that the idea makes no sense for the company.
The original interview and the stories that came out of it had worried Xbox fans at the time, but this more explicit response from Nadella should put worries to rest.