Phil Harrison (pictured, right) says Microsoft has been watching Valve's recent announcement "with great interest."
Harrison, formerly a major figure within Sony's PlayStation operation, is now corporate vice president of Microsoft, running the company's London studio.
"Valve is a very impressive company, and obviously we're going to be watching what they do with great interest," he said in an interview with Eurogamer.
"I think the death of the video game console was prematurely announced," he added. "Clearly there is a lot of excitement around gaming in the living room on the biggest screen in the house, often connected to a great sound system and creating that real intensely high quality game experience with a very powerful CPU and a very powerful GPU.
"Our point of view, clearly, is that Xbox One is the best incarnation of that, but competition is good," he said.