Microsoft Flies Again
August 26, 2010 — Microsoft Flight Simulator, first published by Microsoft in 1982 and the longest-running consumer software franchise in history, was a hit with virtual, prospective, and experienced pilots alike. Tens of millions copies were sold for entertainment, training, and everything in between. This is, in part, why both the software and the aviation worlds were stunned when Microsoft canceled Flight Simulator and its companion franchises, Train Simulator and the ESP training platform, laying off the entire 120+ person team responsible for their development in January 2009.
Things took an interesting turn this past week, however, when Microsoft announced a new product, called simply, Microsoft Flight. The company’s press release promises that the new title “…will bring a new perspective to the long-standing genre, welcoming everyone, including long-time fans, to experience the magic of flight.” In addition to this short description, there is a short teaser video here.
EAA Online Community Manager Hal Bryan worked at Microsoft on the Flight Simulator series for more than a decade before moving to Oshkosh. “Flight Simulator helped introduce so many people to the world of flying over the years,” he said. “So it’s exciting to see Microsoft focusing on aviation again with the launch of this new product. I’m really looking forward to seeing what my friends and former coworkers on the Flight development team come up with as they kick off what will hopefully be another long-lived franchise!”