Xbox 360 price cuts in US; no drop in Oz yet

After multiple retail leaks, Microsoft on Wednesday finally announced US$50 to $80 price cuts on all Xbox 360 models.

After multiple retail leaks, Microsoft on Wednesday finally announced US$50 to $80 price cuts on all Xbox 360 models. But there's no update on a price drop in Australia.

Starting this Friday, Xbox 360 Arcade (without hard drive) will retail for $199.99, followed by the Xbox 360 Pro for $299.99, and Xbox 360 Elite for US$399.99. The news has been widely known for two weeks now, thanks to early retail fliers.

"We are thrilled to be the first next-generation console on the market to reach US$199," said Xbox president Don Mattrick. "The majority of consumers make the decision to buy consoles once the price falls to this mark, making this an important milestone for consumers and the industry."

As it currently stands, the Nintendo Wii retails for $250, making the Xbox 360 Arcade the most affordable console available. The PlayStation 3, by contrast, currently sells for $399 and $499 depending on the model.

You can read GamePro's recent review of the $199 Xbox 360 Arcade here.

Last month Microsoft Australia announced the new Microsoft Xbox 360 Pro console locally, which comes equipped with a 60GB hard drive. This is triple the storage of the previous Xbox 360 Pro machine. The new hard drive will allow gamers to store larger amounts of digital media on their console, including photos, music, movies and downloadable games (via Xbox Live).

The Xbox 360 Pro console is a retails locally for AUS$499: the same price as the old 20GB version.