Ever since the debut of the Atari 2600 in 1977, if a console vendor's gaming instincts were not clean and strong, consumers would hesitate at the moment of truth. The consoles would not sell. And console makers died.
It's now clear that lesson was lost on Microsoft and Sony. Expect Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer to talk a lot about the Xbox 360 at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Wednesday, and Sony Chief Howard Stringer to highlight the role of the PlayStation in that battle as part of his CES keynote the next day.