Print 56 comment(s) - last by Belard.. on Jul 11 at 11:23 PM

Microsoft's Xbox 360 Halo Special Edition boasts 360 Elite features, without the big price tag. (Source: Microsoft)
Microsoft makes no moves to the Xbox 360 price, but instead announced a new Halo-themed console

On Thursday, Microsoft stunned the industry by announcing that it would extend the warranty on Xbox 360s afflicted with the Red Ring of Death (RROD) to three years following DailyTech’s report on Xbox 360 failure rates. On Tuesday night, the spotlight is once again on Microsoft with it hosting the first big press conference at this year’s slimmed-down E3.

Following Sony’s big announcement of the PlayStation 3 price drop, many turned their eyes over to Microsoft to see if it would respond with a price reduction of its own. Wedbush Morgan Securities analyst Michael Pachter even went as far as to tell clients that he is expecting Microsoft to drop the price of the Xbox 360 console across all its product line. Pachter believes that the 60GB PS3, at $499, represents a favorable comparison against the Xbox 360, and that Microsoft will drop the price to widen the gap.

Unfortunately, for those hoping that the analyst’s prophecy would turn out to be true, Microsoft did nothing to the price of its latest consoles. This effectively puts the 60GB PlayStation 3 console, along with its Blu-ray Disc playing capabilities, $20 apart from the HDMI-capable Xbox 360 Elite. In the Canadian market, the Xbox 360 Elite and the 60GB PS3 will share the exact same $549 price tag, giving consumers more to think about than just their wallets.

Perhaps the only “all new” surprise of the press conference was when Peter Moore reached behind the counter to pull out a new Xbox 360 console SKU. Although some may be hoping for that surprise to be the announcement of a more reliable, 65nm chip-based machine, or one with HD DVD built-in, the actual new console is a Halo Special Edition Console.

The Halo Special Edition Console will be shipping this September, no doubt alongside Halo 3’s September 25 release date. The console features an authentic Spartan green and gold finish and comes with matching Xbox 360 Wireless Controller, 20GB Hard Drive, Headset, Play & Charge Kit, HDMI output and exclusive Halo 3 Gamer Pics and Theme available via Xbox Live download. Microsoft has yet to announce pricing for the Halo Special Edition Console.

The special green Xbox 360 isn’t the only Halo promo item on Microsoft’s list. Last month, retailer GameStop revealed special Halo 3-themed Xbox 360 controllers featuring Todd McFarlane artwork and Spartan green wireless headset. For those who must have all things Halo 3, GameStop is also selling an appropriately themed Halo 3 Zune music player.

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RE: Sony and MS
By KnightProdigy on 7/11/2007 11:19:02 AM , Rating: 1
People are slow to realize that BR has beaten HD DVD, and for the price, the BR option on the PS3 is worth the investment.

I agree with many posts that the PS3 has a "shotty at best" game lineup but, as I hate to say this, SOE is much better than Live. I hate how SOE has ruined every game they released, but to put it on a console gives more options for both Sony and the consumer in terms of content. With guarantees of online titles like Second Life and various other successful MMOs, Sony now has 2 markets at their disposal that MS cant even come close to matching.

The announcement of 300 new games for the PS3 in the next year, is just icing on the cake.

I like what the original xBox did for the console market, but Sony is just doing it better. After all, SOE has been in the online market for 2x as long as MS or Live.

Gotta look at the facts.
*The PS3s processor is in fact more powerful than the 360s. In a sense, not as fast, but can handle more throughput (ie. textures and higher quality video).

RE: Sony and MS
By christojojo on 7/11/2007 11:56:00 AM , Rating: 3
I agree. My brother is a console slut. He's bought every fairly successful console (except Dreamcast which is debatable about being a success). He refused to buy the PS3 because of price and because of similar game line ups. But with the price cut and other incentives he's wavering (of course the divorce left him without the Xbox 360 (lol, she doesn't even play))

Still I think allot more are looking at the PS3 and the RRoD has people worried.

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