Microsoft CEO Apologizes For Misleading “New Xbox” Remarks

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Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said sorry for misleading gamers last week with unclear remarks about a “new Xbox” that turned out to be nothing more than the already-announced Natal.

Steve Ballmer should know better than to be careless with his word choice these days. You’d think that he would know that on the internet, anything you say can be construed as confirmation of anything. But Ballmer didn’t just say something vague that people spun into something more – he reportedly announced that there would be a new Xbox next year, when what he really meant by “new Xbox” was probably Project Natal.

“We’re not going to be launching a new console any time soon,” Microsoft’s Aaron Greenberg said after the reports surfaced. “I really believe he was speaking about Project Natal.”

For misleading all of us, Steve Ballmer is sorry. “I confused the issue with my poorly chosen words,” he told IGN. “There is no news in my comments. Things are as reported after E3. Sorry.”

This is kind of rare occasion, not just because a Microsoft figurehead is directly apologizing to us, but because he is actually declaring something he said not newsworthy. I thought the point was to get us to care about what you say, Microsoft.

In any case, Ballmer’s remarks weren’t totally useless. They seem to confirm that Natal is coming next year, though I think most had already assumed that. And things still aren’t entirely clear about what he was talking about. Obviously, yes, he was talking about Natal, but could he have been referring to a new SKU on some level? Greenberg did, after all, confirm that Microsoft has “looked” at that possibility.

In any case, apology accepted.

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