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Microsoft's X-Box PlayStation 2 killer resurfaces

No new detail, but MS is trying to drum up games industry interest again

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Microsoft's mysterious X-Box project, its would-be PlayStation 2 killer, has made another appearance, courtesy of the Dow Jones newswire. The Dow Jones article offers little more in the way of detail than we already know: X-Box is essentially a PC crammed into a console case and will be based on a high-end x86 CPU and Nvidia's GeForce 256-bit graphics accelerator. The one curious titbit in the whole piece is that the device may not, as previously thought, use Windows CE as the OS, but instead use a cut down version of Windows 98. That makes sense, since DirectX, Microsoft's games-oriented API already runs on Win98, but not on CE. Still, since the comment comes from an analyst rather than anyone "familiar with the situation", how accurate it is (ie. is it simply the guy's opinion of what's the likely scenario) remains to be seen. What's interesting about the Dow Jones item is, however, not what it says but that it says it at all. It's clear that DJ's writer has come across one or more "industry executives" who've recently been briefed by Microsoft on the project. Back in September, Microsoft conducted some behind the scenes briefings on X-Box at games industry shindig, the European Computer Trade Show, so presumably the company has more recently begun mooting the concept to the leisure software business once again. Dow Jones suggests Bill Gates was originally to have launched X-Box at Comdex next month, but that plan -- if it ever was a plan -- seems to have been canned. If that is the case, either the reaction from the games industry to Microsoft's plan hasn't been too positive. ® Related Stories Microsoft readies x86, Nvidia-based rival to PlayStation

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