Phil Harrison is a little cautionary when speaking of the Steam Box and Nvidia Shield.
The tech giant was a little more positive when speaking about Valve's and Nvidia's venture into gaming hardware with the Piston and Shield, which were both confirmed and unveiled at this year's CES.
"I think that any new entrant, without being specific to any company or brand or product, any new entrant into the games industry is ultimately a good a thing," said Microsoft vice president Phil Harrison.
However, Harrison also provided words of caution for the two companies. "Entering the hardware business is a really tough business, and you have to have great fortitude to be in the hardware business, and you have to have deep pockets and a very strong balance sheet. It's not possible for every new hardware entrant to get to scale.
"They can be successful at small scale. But it's very rare for a new hardware entrant to get to scale, and I mean tens, hundreds of millions of units. There are a very small number of companies that can make that happen.
"And it's not just having a great brand or a great software experience. It's about having a supply chain and a distribution model and a manufacturing capacity and all the things that go with it. It's a non-trivial problem to solve and it takes thousands of people to make reality."
Deep pockets and strong balance sheets? Check for both Valve and Nvidia, who really are both in prime position to have their gaming hardware take off. But will the Steam Box and Shield take off and ship the amount of units desired? That might be a little bit trickier to manage.