Phil Spencer has a very different view of what success for Microsoft looks like.
While console wars might be a thing that the gaming community takes for granted, as far as those actually in the business are concerned, that’s far from the truth. Microsoft and Sony, for instance, are in direct competition with each other, and have been for over a decade now, but it’s not like one of them cannot survive in the market while the other is still around.
Phil Spencer, head of Xbox and the gaming division at Microsoft, recently spoke in an interview with Fortune, and candidly went over this very topic, while speaking of his work with Sony, Google, Nintendo, and others that are deemed Microsoft’s competitors in the market. Spencer sees gaming as a growing business, and doesn’t feel like the way to success for any entity in the industry is by pulling down competitors.
“I would say the most competitive side of it- no,” said Spencer, when asked if the perception of this competition in the general audiences affects the way Microsoft approaches its decisions. “I’m always listening to the community, but the people who want to see others fail in order for the green team to succeed- that’s not me. There were people, when the Sony deal was announced, I could see it online, ‘what are you doing helping them out?’
“And it’s like, we’ve had years and years of a relationship with Sony. Sony shipped PCs and they had Windows on it, they use our development tools to build games. This idea that the only way for any of us to succeed is by pulling down someone else just isn’t the way that the industry works today. It just isn’t.”
Spencer was also quick to point out that, thanks to them owning Mahjong and, in turn, Minecraft, Microsoft are one of PlayStation’s biggest third party publishers. “We’re one of the biggest publishers on PlayStation,” he said. “We ship Minecraft there. We have a great business on Sony’s PlayStation, and Nintendo Switch.”
It’s great to see Spencer continuing to encourage a more open approach to thriving in the industry, even though the likes of Sony and Google do remain Microsoft’s competitors, with the likes of the PS5 and Stadia coming up. You can see the full interview below- there’s a lot of very interesting stuff in there.