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$99 Xbox 360 with subscription is real, expensive

Today we got confirmation on a report from last week that alleged Microsoft was planning a new pricing structure for the Xbox 360. In addition to all the other current prices, the report said Microsoft would add a new model at the low price of $99 plus $14.99 per month and a two year contract.

While some speculated on what that would mean, we now have a slightly clearer idea now that Microsoft has officially announced the bundle (only available at Microsoft stores.) The wording though, has us a little worried.

"Jump into the Xbox Experience for only $99," the ad reads. "Xbox 360 4GB console with Kinect for only $99 with new 2 year Xbox Live Gold contract at $14.99/month."

If we're reading that right, it sounds like Microsoft is saying the $14.99 per month is the cost of Xbox Live Gold. Currently at $60/year, this would balloon the cost of Xbox Live Gold to $179.88 per year for purchasers of this particular bundle. The total cost of the console would then become $458.76. Not exactly a great deal, but not horrible if you'd rather spread the cost over two years.

It's unknown whether Microsoft will be bundling any services with that mammoth price, although if they bundled movie services like Netflix and Hulu along with their upcoming music service, Woodstock, that would fit with their ultimate plan to dominate the set-top box industry.

We've contacted Microsoft to see if we can get some clarification. As of right now, it is becoming more and more clear that Microsoft is testing the waters for some big changes in the next console generation. It's possible we might see a subscription model launch alongside their next gen console. Heck, it's possible the next console will be entirely subscription based.

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37 comments

  • pr0tostar - May 8, 2012 10:38 p.m.

    Yeah. I get it. You end up paying slightly more, but at a convenient 2 year spread. If Microsoft made more of an effort to keep the valued customer in mind, I'd consider it. But with their current model of billing to use their console online, it still reeks of a scheme more than a considerate offer. -The dashboard and Marketplace ads are literally overwheliming. I go on my friends to look at dlc and downloadable games, and the screen is littered with oversized ads of shit I don't give a damn about when I'm sitting at a game console. Where the **** are the games...? Oh it's this teeny little tab off to the side of this repulsive Dancing with the Stars advert. It's really like walking up to gamestop and having a band of Vegas strip hustlers waiting in the doorway to shove flyers in your face. The whole setup gives off this snobby vibe like "oh you're accessing the XBLM, you must be a wealthy upperclass citizen, how about purchasing some fine (read:redundant and useless)applications?!" Sony's PSN layout via the xmb and store neatly organizes ads in modest sized popups that come up when the general media type is selected, gone as soon as they had appeared when you continue downward to make a selection. Any other advertisement information is streamed through a small, closeable headliner bar. Now which of those seems like the more mature and user/consumer-friendly market environments? And yet the latter still manages to offer general online gaming services for free. Advertisement and sponsorship are essential in this industry, so it's really a matter of presentation. -And when it comes down to making those online purchases, it makes me laugh that Microsoft still smugly pawns its 4gb 360 onto the promotional playing field. Ok, so I'll be bound to paying for a service for 2 years (hey, I'm always gonna love Sony for offering this for free, but "damn, all my friends are Microsheep, I wanna play teh vidya with them. Oh well.") Now... obviously I'm going to need far more than 4gb to get any practical use out of the service (not to mention playing any game uninstalled just sucks.)Cool, Let's tack an accommodating hdd onto that for <$60, which Microsoft will surely get a cut of in the long run. But to put it crudely, a 4gb can't do shit, and that's why it's the Deal model. It's literally a pawn. A ploy to get the consumer to make another foolish move to net them a gain. Again, compare it ethically to Sony; A generous, accommodating system at a no-nonsense flat rate. Again, it just brings perspective into view that one company schemes consumers, and the other considers them. Alot of what I just wrote is personal feeling ofcourse, but on the other hand, it's all fact. I'm an average working-class person who enjoys gaming as a hobby, and I've wanted a 360 for years, but simply to be able to join my friends. To see that one of the most successful companies in the world still refuses to offer its 7 year old console in a friendly and competitive manner disappoints me. To see them offer it as a cold, contract-bound scheme is disgusting... for far more reasons than paying "a little more over time." I've raged, I've ranted, but it takes something this unethical to make me complain about entertainment. Consumerism should be a symbiosis. Microsoft is steadfastly showing its nature as a parasite with every step the company takes. Frankly, they'd probably take "consumerist parasite" as a compliment (it's how it's gotten em to the top after all)so, I really hope this bs gets as much controversial and negative feedback as possible. It's time Microsoft realized you wont get away with every pitch. This is the one I hope people stand up to and see the crudeness of, and at least put a permanent scratch on their reputation. So anyway, who's up for some Nintendogs?
  • needles - May 8, 2012 10:53 a.m.

    I'm not feeling this. Screw this new online play.
  • MadMan - May 8, 2012 6:37 a.m.

    I feel sorry for the person who falls for this, and I really hope this pricing structure isn't our only option on the next Xbox. I will not buy it if it is.
  • c-c-c-combo breaker - May 8, 2012 2:54 a.m.

    The reason why I prefer the Ps3. Subscription internet is ridiculous.
  • jmcgrotty - May 8, 2012 1:29 a.m.

    If they release a version that comes witout a Kinect, I'd go as high as $105 for this deal (not counting the Xbox Live Gold). Yes, I would pay more not to deal with that even in my possession. No, I am not being literal.
  • BaraChat - May 7, 2012 8:55 p.m.

    Let's say you pay a 4GB X360 for $150 (that's how much I paid for mine, new from a retail store), Kinect for $100 and two years of Live for $120. That's still only $370. And if you're a deal hunter you can probably lower that amount under $350. I know payments are made monthly so it's less of a burden, but I would never, ever, be appealed by such an offer. Never. But hey, that's business and Microsoft KNOW people will bite and they're gonna make more money off them.
  • talleyXIV - May 7, 2012 3:50 p.m.

    4 GB? I'm out.
  • n00b - May 7, 2012 3:36 p.m.

    this doesn't solve the problem of ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ads ADS
  • archnite - May 7, 2012 8:14 p.m.

    for a minute there I thought you were typing AIDS and thought to myself, "Why would Microsoft solve AIDS? They love all money their getting from aids."
  • Rub3z - May 7, 2012 2:49 p.m.

    I think some of you guys in this here comment thread fail to see the beauty and indeed, smart business sense of this offer. Don't you see? It creates a low barrier to entry. And it actually doesn't cost all that much more in the end when you think about it. For example, it seems like a lot of you aren't taking into account the fact that this is one of their newer, shinier models of consoles on offer with Kinect (just one damn Kinect unit in and of itself is pretty expensive, from what I hear) bundled in, plus 2 years of Live Gold for the low price of $99 up front, and you're just paying off the rest on a monthly basis. To the lowest common denominator, at the least... that's pretty damn appealing, if I say so myself. Get it?
  • tiben36 - May 7, 2012 3:03 p.m.

    the live gold isnt free as its written, its 15$/month with 2 years obligation i think ill still enjoy my free psn
  • ParagonT - May 7, 2012 5:23 p.m.

    I really don't see the beauty, your right. All I see is a big fat profit for microsoft at the consumer expense.
  • FoxdenRacing - May 7, 2012 12:46 p.m.

    If they keep the traditional SKUs as well, all they're doing is putting money in their own pocket instead of the various "Rent to Own" places. That's smart business. If they announce that 'buy once and be done' SKUs are going away, *THEN* get the pitchforks, torches, tar, and feathers.
  • laurenhiya21 - May 7, 2012 12:34 p.m.

    I really hope this doesn't become a thing... I would much rather save up a bunch of money until I could buy a console in one go, rather than pay some at front, and have to worry about paying more money every month :/
  • badgraphix1 - May 7, 2012 12:30 p.m.

    This is actually a decent deal if you only plan on playing singleplayer games.
  • Dadyo238 - May 7, 2012 1:05 p.m.

    But you HAVE to have the subscription if you buy this bundle, that's the whole point.
  • lazer59882 - May 7, 2012 7:16 p.m.

    EXACTLY! i can't believe no one else has made this point. i'd jump all over this offer, cause there's few things i hate as much as online gaming. i'll take my $99 console and free silver subscription for DLC and stuff and be on my way, thank you very much.
  • ObliqueZombie - May 7, 2012 11:22 a.m.

    Just another reason to make the slow transition to PC gaming. Just in case this next batch of consoles rivals the steep starting price of computers. As far as I'm concerned, I'll never buy or sell my current 360 Slim again if that shit's coming to light. Luckily it's only Microsoft stores for now, but God knows when that'll spill over into Wal*Marts, Game Stops, and even Game Exchanges. Don't shoot your own foot again, Games Industry.
  • larkan - May 7, 2012 11:12 a.m.

    anyone who buys this package deserves to get ripped off because they're horrible at math, and apparently love to waste money. PAYING Microsoft for a service (in which you already pay for considering the cost of internet) has been the biggest rip off since the introduction of the 360. At least Sony got one thing right with the PS3, not charging people to play their fucking games online.
  • KnowYourPokemon - May 7, 2012 11:09 a.m.

    I rarely use XBox Live as it is, if they're going to up the price that much without adding some huge benefit to being subscribed I'm officially done with Microsoft. Though, based on the use my 360 has received in the past year it seems like I've given up on them already.

Showing 1-20 of 37 comments

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