Microsoft Axes Xbox 360 Price

Dennis Faas's picture

In one of the least surprising moves in recent gaming history, Microsoft has slashed the price of its popular Xbox 360 console.

Given the growing affection for Nintendo's Wii, a much cheaper system, the announcement is hardly shocking. It has been rumored for months that Microsoft may lower the price of its Xbox 360, released in November of 2005, in order to stay competitive. (Source:

How cheap will it go?

According to reports, the standard "Premium" edition of the console will drop from $399 US to just $350. The Premium version boasts a 20 GB hard drive, wireless controller, and Xbox Live headset.

Similar drops have been announced for the 360's secondary and tertiary packages, the "Elite" and "Core" units. The Elite, which features a goliath 120 GB hard drive and HDMI port, will also drop by $50, from $500 to $450. The rather unpopular Core, which lacks any hard drive at all, will only drop from $300 to $280. (Source:

For the record, the Core edition of the Xbox 360 remains $30 more expensive than Nintendo's Wii, which boasts no unique editions. However, Microsoft's console (like Sony's PlayStation 3) is capable of media and gaming features, including online play, DVD playback, and for a price ($150), HD-DVD playback.

Reasons for the price drop may not be solely concerned with the competition, however. Given the Xbox 360's battle with the "Red Circle of Death" and an overall poor technical rating, the new initiative may lure previously wary consumers to the big white machine.

Why now?

With the imminent release of Electronic Arts' incredibly popular Madden NFL 08 (plus Bioshock, Halo 3, and Project Gotham Racing 4), there's no better time than now to take a chance on a well-supported (but not-so-durable) video game console.

Note: Gamers interested in the Xbox 360 (it's the console this writer prefers) should take note that Microsoft has extended the warranty for its system through much of the hardware's projected lifetime.


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