Confusion over 360 price changes

With the industry bracing itself for an RRP drop for the top-end Xbox 360 Elite SKU this week, it now looks as if the entry-level Arcade hardware could be in for a price increase.

At the end of last week it seemed that all the evidence was pointing to an end to the Xbox 360 Pro SKU and a price drop for the high-end Xbox 360 Elite offering.

But confusion is now rife in the channel with Microsoft seemingly confirming that the Xbox 360 Arcade console is going to see an RRP increase.

Leaked documentation and sources close to MCV last week claimed that the Xbox 360 Pro is being phased out, with the Xbox 360 Elite – a SKU that includes a 120GB HDD – dropping by 60 to take its place.

This belief was given further credence by an online listing from Argos claiming that the Pro had been ‘discontinued’ – though the retailer later claimed this was an error.

However, MCV has since spoken to one UK technology retailer who confirmed that Microsoft has told retail to expect the Xbox 360 Arcade bundle to increase in price from 129.99 to 159.99.

The platform holder has also confirmed a number of price rises to many of its accessories, including joypads and headsets. In addition, the lack of any mention of the Xbox 360 Pro SKU seems to confirm its anticipated demise.

However, a closer inspection of the documentation sent to retailers seems to suggest that the Xbox 360 Arcade listing is a placeholder for an as-of-yet unspecified SKU. Whether that’s an enhanced Arcade SKU or a reduced RRP Elite – or even both – is yet to be seen.

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