Another gaming rumour: Citing the usual unnamed sources, tech website Fudzilla is claiming Microsoft (MSFT) may soon stop offering its $400 Xbox 360 Elite, the super-premium version of its Xbox game console. Sales of the $300 Xbox 360 Pro and $200 no-online play Xbox 360 Arcade would continue.
Wikipedia has a great chart comparing the feature sets of Arcade vs Pro vs Elite.
It’s actually not a bad idea. Two reasons:
- The Elite is generally the only black Xbox, and Microsoft is increasingly pushing ‘limited edition’ consoles like a Red Xbox bundled with the Resident Evil 5 game. Apple (AAPL), Nintendo (NTDOY), and Sony (SNE) have all already figured out people will pay a premium for a rare-coloured gadget, even when that rare-colour is a totally artificial construct. Taking black Xbox’s off the market (or spreading gossip it may happen) creates scarcity and could drive short-term Elite sales.
- Sony makes a plausible case its $400 PS3 offers a more compelling feature set (Blu-ray, wi-fi) than the $400 X360 Elite (HDMI cable, headset). But if the most expensive Xbox on the market is the $300 Pro, Sony’s already-expensive console will appear even more overpriced.