How did Microsoft pull it off? They were a boring, monolithic software company helmed by Bill Gates, the world's biggest geek. They made Windows. They made spreadsheet software and word processing programs.
They were a boring part of our lives we were forced to accept as a boring part of our technological infrastructure, only a few pixels away from concrete or plumbing. Then, of all things, Microsoft turned its hat backwards and tried to sit at the cool table. They released the Xbox.
And they lost $4 billion.
But all was not a wash. While some would say Xbox (original) lost money, others realized that Microsoft really just invested the funds. And from this investment, they'd gained a non-Winblows identity in the marketplace, along with a powerful icon that was nearly as synonymous to the Xbox console as Mario was to Nintendo or Sonic to Sega: Master Chief.
"Just wait till the movie comes out........................"