How Bill Gates Almost Killed Xbox

Microsoft's Xbox division now generates $16 billion in yearly revenue, yet it virtually never existed in the company's early years.

The failure of Xbox to arrive alongside Windows was almost the sole factor in its cancellation from development.

A report from IGN from a few years ago that depicts a meeting between Microsoft officials in which Gates called the Xbox a "insult" and attempted to stop its release is making the rounds once more.

In a meeting that took place 18 months before the Xbox was released, the Microsoft co-founder reportedly tried to stop the Xbox, according to Ed Fries, the co-creator of the console.

Gates and Microsoft co-founder Steve Ballmer were presented with the concept of a video game system that was "a PC in disguise" by Fries and his team. Another group favoured making the Xbox a conventional console rather than a Windows-based one.

Gates was disgruntled and almost cancelled the launch when it became clear that the console would not run on Windows but rather on a closed system.

A "insult" to everything he had accomplished with Microsoft, according to Gates, was the release of Xbox without Windows.

Ballmer worried that they may abandon the initiative they had invested so much money in.

Someone brought out Sony's potential as a Microsoft rival and its expanding living room presence. After the Sony remarks, Gates and Ballmer approved the Xbox's launch.