Xbox Manufacturing Underway for Nov. 15 Launch Date

REDMOND, Wash., Sept. 21, 2001 — Microsoft Corp. today announced it has begun manufacturing the Microsoft® Xbox™
in Guadalajara, Mexico, and provided new details about the 2001 launch.

Xbox will launch in North America on Nov. 15, 2001. The company also reconfirmed it will ship 1 million to 1.5 million Xbox consoles to North American retailers this holiday season, with replenishment of more than 100,000 Xbox units each week.

“Put a great big ‘X’ on Nov. 15,”
said Robbie Bach, chief Xbox officer at Microsoft.
“Xbox is the one worth waiting for. It’s the only video game system being manufactured in North America. This is significant because it assures retailers that we can keep filling the retail channel with new Xbox units week after week.”

“Enthusiasm for Xbox is really taking off,”
said Wayne Yodzio, vice president of Toys
“R”
Us.
“Microsoft is delivering what it takes to make this a great holiday season for us — namely a great lineup of Xbox games, a rapid replenishment plan that will keep our shelves filled with Xbox systems every week, and quantities for the holiday season that will translate the excitement about Xbox into strong sales.”

“Having the right infrastructure in place will allow Microsoft to build gamer excitement with available product on the shelves, from launch through the holidays and beyond,”
said Peter Moore, president and COO of Sega of America.
“Microsoft has recognized that the road to success is more of a marathon than a sprint.”

Xbox Games

Microsoft confirmed that it will launch with 15 to 20 games and finish the holiday season with more than 30 game titles on shelf. Xbox has tremendous support from the games development community, including leading developers such as Sega, Electronic Arts, THQ, Tecmo, Infogrames, Activision, Konami, Eidos, LucasArts and Midway. Microsoft will also have leading titles, including
“Halo™ ”
,
“Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee™ ,” “NFL Fever 2002”
and several others, from its own game studios.

“The degree of success of a console is based on customer acceptance and a lineup of great games, not on a launch date or initial numbers,”
said Jeffrey Griffiths, CEO of Electronics Boutique.
“Thus far, customer enthusiasm has been exceptional, and we’ve been very impressed with the assortment of games. We’re confident in the long-term success of the product and pleased to be working with Microsoft in this venture.”

“Xbox starting manufacturing is great news for gamers, and THQ will be ready with some of the most anticipated Xbox games for the holiday season, such as ‘WWF: Raw Is War’ and ‘Dark Summit,'”
said Brian Farrell, president and chief executive officer of THQ.
“We like Microsoft’s approach to video games and believe its focus on weekly store replenishment will be key to strong holiday sales for both Xbox and THQ’s first-generation Xbox games.”

About Xbox

Xbox ( http://www.xbox.com/ ) is Microsoft’s future-generation video game system that delivers the most powerful games experiences ever. Xbox empowers game artists by giving them the technology to fulfill their creative visions as never before, creating games that blur the lines

between fantasy and reality. Xbox will be available in North America on Nov. 15, 2001, at the estimated retail price of $299.99.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

Statements in this release that are
“forward-looking statements”
are based on current expectations and assumptions that are subject to risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially because of factors such as entry into the video game market with entrenched competitors, market acceptance of Xbox and related products, delays in product development, reliance on sole-source suppliers, or shortages of key components that delay product delivery; higher relative marketing expenses associated with new product releases; customer demand for Xbox and related products; the support of third-party games developers; competitive products and pricing; changes in product mix; product life cycles; Microsoft’s ability to efficiently integrate acquired businesses; implementation of cost structures that align with revenue growth; the financial condition of vendors, resellers and retailers; general economic conditions that affect demand for consumer electronics; and other factors discussed in the
“Management Discussion and Analysis”
section of the Company’s 2000 Form 10-K and other reports and filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Microsoft, Xbox and Halo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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