Peter Moore - VP of Microsoft's interactive entertainment business, entertainment and devices division and Chris Satchell - general manager of Microsoft's game development group - launched an unprecedented attack on Sony's PlayStation 3 business at CES in Las Vegas yesterday.
Speaking exclusively to GamesIndustry.biz, the two senior executives branded the Japanese firm's online service for the newly-launched console a "disaster" and said the company lacks the talent and the "DNA" to ever deliver a suitable online console service for consumers.
"It's going to take [Sony] a couple of years to get up to speed on this, and I'm not sure that they necessarily have the talent, or it's built into who they are as a company," Moore said.
"They're struggling with some of their hardware issues, and apparently they're going to deliver another five million in the next 90 days. But this business is about hardware, software and services now. And the consumer expects that."
Moore's comments came as he explained how much commitment Microsoft has needed to create the currently available Live offering.
"It's taken a company like Microsoft four solid years to get where we are today - the richness of the experience, the consistency of the experience, constantly updating features and making it feel fresh - and we're a software company and this is a software plane," he said.
"It is not in Sony's DNA to be able to get that up and running from zero."
Satchell bore similar sentiments. "If I wanted to make my online service better, and I wanted to give [Sony] a little piece of advice, it would be to copy Xbox Live a little more closely," he said.
"My honest opinion is that it's pretty much a disaster. They keep saying that they have a free service. Well, if they don't have anything, of course it's free. And you know what: what's free about $600?"
Moore and Satchell were speaking after announcements at CES from Bill Gates on Sunday that Xbox Live will be brought to Windows Vista this summer, and an announcement from Sony on Monday that 1 million PS3s have now shipped in the US.
The full interview with Peter Moore is now on GamesIndustry.biz. The interview with Chris Satchell will follow tomorrow.