In a Reddit thread concerning the Xbox external storage not being supported at launch that we reported on earlier, Microsoft's Larry Hryb (aka. Major Nelson) stated that the Xbox One was not rushed out in response to Sony's PlayStation 4 announcements.
A Reddit user comment that given the inconsistent messages, reduction n launch countries, the lack of external storage support at launch and other issues that have come up, that it was clear that Microsoft was working on Sony's schedule, not their own.
He responded with, "The Xbox One program has been in development for years, so calling it 'Rushed' is incorrect. Did we have a few challenges between May and August? Sure. But we are working on our own schedule - not any one else's. At Gamescom, every game in the Xbox booth was running on final Xbox One hardware. Every. Single. One. That would paint a very different take on the being 'rushed.'"
While the Xbox One may have been on their plate for years, one still has to wonder if the PlayStation 4 announcement caught them a little off guard and they had to scramble to get the console ready for a consumer launch in the same time frame. There is still no official announcement on the exact date of the Xbox One's launch.