Don Mattrick, senior VP of Interactive Entertainment at Microsoft, has told GamesIndustry.biz that he believes Xbox Live is the single most important product of this generation.
Speaking as part of an exclusive interview published today, Mattrick went head-to-head with his equal at Sony, Kaz Hirai, answering five key questions on the Xbox and PlayStation businesses.
"I think that being the company to build a gaming community, to do it globally, to have all the functionality that we have inside of that, is a pretty staggering accomplishment," said Mattrick of Xbox Live.
"We announced at the show that we've seen our membership from last E3 go from 6 million to over 12 million, and in the two and a half years we've been operating Xbox Live on 360 consumers have spent over a billion dollars.
"A lot of people are talking about rolling out a service or talking about making it work for people. What we've demonstrated is we have that service, we have a large audience that's participated and is valuable, and it's awesome," he added.
Although Sony's Kaz Hirai also believes services such as Home and the recently announced content-on-demand service for PlayStation Network are significant, for the the president of SCE, it's the games that count.
"I think that it goes without saying - the most important product is the games that play on the PS3 first and foremost," he said.
"That's always been the most important. I think what differentiates this generation of hardware is, in addition to the games, all the other non-game service and content that we can provide to the consumers through the PS3."
The face-off between Don Mattrick and Kaz Hirai can be read here.