E3 2018: Microsoft's gaming chiefs on the future of Xbox

The company is investing in studios in attempt to win over next generation of gamers

When you think of Microsoft, you probably think of Word or Windows first; omnipresent computer software that, despite its usefulness, does not elicit enormous excitement. Xbox is different. At E3 each year, the video games industry’s biggest event, Microsoft packs out a stadium-sized room with fans for its annual press conference, many of whom have travelled from all over the world. People are passionate about Xbox and its games – Minecraft, Halo, Gears of War – in a way that nobody is about Microsoft Office.

Microsoft’s most senior figures appear to have woken up to this relatively recently. Phil Spencer, who ran Xbox’s game development studios for years, was made executive vice-president of gaming within the company in September 2017. This finally put Xbox on equal footing with Windows and Office within Microsoft – and put a gamer in the room with the CEO and CTO of the company. This has meant big changes for the Xbox business, and apparently huge investment in creative video game talent.

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