Subsidized Xbox 360 program expanded to 250GB models

Microsoft beefing up subscription-based offer to include $99 250GB model and $150 250GB Kinect offer when two years of Xbox Live are purchased; coming to Wal-Mart, Toys R Us, all GameStop locations.

Microsoft is expanding its subsidized Xbox 360 program with new models and wider availability. Beginning sometime soon, the technology giant will offer a 250GB model for $99 and a 250GB version with Kinect for $150 when users sign up for two years of Xbox Live at $15 per month. The new models will join the existing $99 4GB model with Kinect.

The subscription-based Xbox 360 offer launched in May 2012 and is currently available only in North America through official Microsoft stores as well as retailers like GameStop and Best Buy.

However, Microsoft is expanding the offer to even more retailers. Microsoft marketing general manager Matt Barlow told The Wall Street Journal recently that the deal will be extended to Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, and all GameStop locations in the coming weeks.

He also suggested that the offer may be extended to international markets, though he did not confirm a timeline for this. Additionally, Barlow said a subsidized model is likely to remain in place for future product launches, adding, "This type of program is pivotal to our business."

Microsoft is the only major platform holder to offer a subscription approach. The offer mirrors that of cell phone plan providers, whereby subscribers pay less up front but are required to commit for two years and face early termination fees should they want out.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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135 comments
santinegrete
santinegrete

And I still can't use what the disks I want on it, like in PS3 or my beloved PC. With Halo 4 installation mandatory, even the quality of the videogames seems coaxed by this.

Killer6b9
Killer6b9

they really need to quit trying to be a Rent to Own and stop this non sense......I still think it is funny that the Wii U came out with a 8/32 Gig storage and M$ still sells the 4 Gig POS but yet the M$ boys keep yelling 8/32 is not enough.......oh well calling the kettle black as usual.....

SlowMotionKarma
SlowMotionKarma

So you'd end up paying $460. The 250 GB system is $299 and two years of XBL Gold via Amazon is $50 a year, so you'd end up paying ~$60 more.

I only have XBL Silver, and if you're going that route you'd be paying $160 more.

If you really can't wait to save up and buy the console outright, whatever, but either way you look at it, you're paying more in the long run. It's a smart move for MS though, since more and more people have the "give me now, I'll pay later" attitude. Instant gratification is a big pull for impatient people.

BillyColeman
BillyColeman

why not just give M$$$$$$$$$$ your card and call it a day xbox live gold is ass as is endless your a fps fan boy other then that well mind craft :P wait that's right the pc ver kicks way more ass my bad

Flint247
Flint247

I believe a person is better off using a little patience and saving up for the full price than to take this deal, because you do pay more in the end. I would rather wait and save up and pay less than to rush and pay more. But it all in a person's choice, if they take this deal, that's their decision. However, that extra cash can be useful for other emergencies or important purchases. Use proper discretion.

SavageEvil
SavageEvil

Lol, funny comments abound with folk here trying to defend MS mathematics.  Look here we are nothing more than wallets and that is it. Live used to be the best priced to value online console service once upon a time, not so anymore. This "deal" is crap, there is absolutely no reason to rush out and buy a dying system anyway, what the hell if you hadn't bought one by now, a few more months won't kill you. If you cannot honestly afford to get one at regular price, then you should have other things to think about besides playing video games. This stuff is for MS to take advantage of poor and underprivileged, look at how it's laid out. As usual corporate companies care little about the consumers that keep them afloat.  This is the only demographic I can see this appealing to, look at that entry price and it's only $15 a month, sweet deal...not even looking at the long run costs.

rarson
rarson

It's not a subsidy if it costs you more in the long run. The fact is that if you buy the thing outright and pay for the subscription, you pay less money. This is rent-to-own garbage. You pay more for the privilege of paying less up front. This kind of program is for stupid, impulsive people who cannot be bothered to save their money before buying things they don't really need. If you don't have an Xbox 360 at this point, I think you can wait a little longer to save up the whopping $200 that it costs.

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

Microsoft hopefully will do this with the Xbox 720. Which will help sales. Even though it will be more that the $500.00 base price. Or whatever the Xbox 720  will cost.

GH05T-666
GH05T-666

very cheap, i guess there are trying to make some sales back before they release a new console.

Wii U comes out soon so PS3 and XBOX are amping up there deals/hard drives and color choices to try and suppress the Wii U sales until they both release there new consoles end of next year most likely.

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

Honestly if you are going to be getting Live Gold anyways this is a pretty good deal.

steelmouth
steelmouth

only rich people dont get this deal because they can afford to pop up $300 plus ~$100 (for a game or two) at once to buy a console, for us poor people paying $99 now and the rest later is better than paying full price and having to get so crappy bargain game because you ran out of money,i know i had to buy peter jackson king kong because it was the cheapest game available,and it was ither that or no games for my brand new 360 (now RROD'ed)

brainiac1988
brainiac1988

does a gold subscription cost $15 per month in us....?

its €20,- for 3 months here in the netherlands

steelmouth
steelmouth

if this comes to Botswana am getting it, at $99 + $15 for 24 months that like $459 and we already buying the 250HDD or Kinect 360 without LIVE subscription for that amount because of the stupid mark ups and exchange rates

 

Assumption: The $15 LIVE subscription is not subjected to stupid mark ups and exchange rates

Spartan_1004
Spartan_1004

Ok, people keep getting the math wrong lower in the comments. Use the full price of of a 360 with kinect not the sale price. That would be $299 for a 4gb w/kinect and 2 years full price of xbox live $120. That is rounded up $420.

 

This offer is $99 upfront and 2 years of xbox live at $15 a month instead of $5 which is $360. The total is $460 again rounding up the extra dollar. You are paying $40 dollars more. 

 

Not saying I'm going to do this but in the end it all depends how long it takes you to come up with the full amount (assuming you want xbox live as well) and if $40 difference is worth not waiting. I personally would wait just because they always bundle cool stuff with the console later on or come out with a nice themed xbox. (R2D2 xbox anyone? Who cares if star wars kinect was crap.)

Trickymaster
Trickymaster

$15 a month?!? Agdvjhrsfhfsffffuuu! I  remember back in the day when you could get a month for $3. You gotta be kidding, Microsoft. 

 

If the next Xbox is subscription only,  IalreadI already know who lost the next console war. 

mariokart64fan
mariokart64fan

this makes as much financial sense as my auto insurance company , 

Scynt
Scynt

4GB 360 + 250GB MS HDD + 2 12 month XBL cards = $200 + $50 + $100 = $350250GB 360 + $15/month 2 year subscription = $100 + $360 = $460

 

Yeah, this is dumb.

tommynj
tommynj

Get ready for this to be the new model for the 720. 

Spartan_418
Spartan_418

I really hope they don't intend on making subscription plans the only options for the Next Xbox. I'd much rather pay $400 up front for a new console and not worry about monthly charges.

 

They already can't really justify charging $60 a year for Xbox Live when normal PSN provides most of the same functionality and is free (yes I know it's possible to get 12-month XBL cards off Amazon etc for under $60, but that's the amount MS wants).

username191624
username191624

This makes no financial sense.  Xbox live is normally $5 a month, so this means paying an extra $10 a month under the subsidized program.   Over 2 years, the total cost of the xbox is $349 ($240 subsidy + $99).  Its cheaper to buy the system retail price of $250 or less.

MeatWood89
MeatWood89

With the 720 being shown at the next e3, and it coming out holiday 2013.. idk why anyone would do this. and if the 720 is 800$ or 99$ and a 30$ a month fee for 2 years. id much rather save up and pay the 800$. (idk wht the prices will be, just an example)

Flint247
Flint247

I prefer to pay for things like gaming systems in full price.

Warlockofhell
Warlockofhell

At this price each month, why not make the 4GB without kinect model free? Lot of people would get it... And it would be a ''great'' marketing strategy...

Master_Turismo
Master_Turismo

I loved the price till the requirement of Xbox Live was mentioned. Better off doing layaway.

Dark_Arcitekt
Dark_Arcitekt

Didn't MS do something similar last year? It was fail then and it is fail now.

CraigNinten
CraigNinten

this deal = 99(console only) + 15*24 = $459

purchase separately = 250(console and kinetic) + 60*2 = $370

so that you get more AND pay a far lower price.

this deal is for brain damaged individuals who can't think for themselves.

nedrith
nedrith

Well now, the idea sounds fine, But at $15 a month this is the same as basically taking out a loan to get a 360 and like all loans you get screwed in the end by paying a lot more than it was worth. 

 

Sadly a lot of people will fall for it.  Also this will be an excuse to raise the prices on a system.  Would as many people own a Iphone if they had to pay full price(AKA $600-$700) for it.  No, but they'll pay $199 along with a overpriced 2 year contract(not bashing the Iphone all phone companies are doing this now). 

 

Next Xbox system will be $800 probably.  But if you want you can pay $400..  better be willing to pay $30 a month for 3 years though afterward though.

 

Sad part is that a lot of people who can't afford to pay for stuff like this up front and would use this program are those who can't afford it because they constantly use programs like this. The same people who have $1000s of dollars in credit card debt and such.

SolidTy
SolidTy

If people sign up now, they will get the worst years of Xbox Live at the highest prices and will be stuck into a two year agreement. Xbox Live is more pricey with this deal, for those that don't know.

 

Better to wait for the 720 at this point as it's just one year away.

Hrel
Hrel

 @Flint247 This thought process is true for credit cards and cars and to a lesser extent houses as well. Anytime you "buy" something before you can pay for it you're making a mistake. Really you should live in an apartment until you have enough saved up for a house. Buy a cheap car and only get a nicer one after you've saved up the money for it and only buy a game console after you have all the money for it and a game or two.

rarson
rarson

 @steelmouth 

 

First of all, if you can't afford $200 on a console, then you don't need to be spending money on (7 year-old) video games. Secondly, you end up paying MORE by paying less up front. So this deal is only good if you're stupid. It's going to cost you more no matter how you look at it.

 

This is the same thing that credit card companies do. They give you a big balance that you can't possibly pay off all at once so that you leave a balance on your card for which they can charge you interest. You're paying for the convenience of spending money that you don't have. That's exactly what this program is doing. They're giving it to you at a lower price up front but charging you for it over the long term.

rarson
rarson

 @brainiac1988 

 

It costs more if you pay less for the console.

 

In other words, if you pay regular price for the console and regular price for Xbox Live for two years, you end up paying less than if you buy the console for $99.

Vodoo
Vodoo

 @Trickymaster It's $15/month because you're paying for the console also, not just Live. This is a great program imo. It gives people who otherwise wouldn't have $350 to drop on a system the opportunity to get a console for cheap, while making chump-change payments each month. Everybody can afford $15/month, not everyone can afford $350.

ggregd
ggregd

 @CraigNinten Where are you getting a 250GB XBox with Kinect for $250?  Because I'd like to buy them out and resell them at a substantial profit.

johnny_pay
johnny_pay

 @CraigNinten the whole point is you spend $15 a month rather than a fat lump sum of $370. just like a mobile phone. do you buy the phone for $500 and get a $10 top every month or get a contract where you pay $40 a month. not everyone can stretch their budget to allow a big 1 off payment.

3k3
3k3

 @SolidTy Wouldn't the live carry over though if you use the same microsoft account?

rarson
rarson

 @Vodoo

 

It's a great program for impulsive idiots who buy things they can't afford, sure. It's also a great program for people who like to pay more for things over time. If you like this program, I suggest you go out and get a bunch of credit cards as well. Then you can buy all sorts of things you can't afford and pay more for them over time run as you fail to pay your balances off and interest builds up.

CraigNinten
CraigNinten

 @ggregd I hope you understand that I said console only vesus console + kinect here, I did not mention capacity, as its not hard to add storage afterward.

Vic6933
Vic6933

 @johnny_pay  @CraigNinten

Makes sense sure to not pay a lump sum but the difference with phones is that you can't use them without some sort of plan.  Even if you do use phone cards or buy mins or whatever.  You can play a 360 without Live just as fine, unless you are really looking for that multiplayer experience.  Still the system functions the same where as a phone is pretty much useless without some kind of plan.

SolidTy
SolidTy

 @3k3 Of course, but they will still be paying for the 360 they bought. You see, you don't just sign up to Xbox Live, you sign up to Xbox Live at a much higher price to pay off the 360.

 

What you are suggesting is they take this deal, then BUY the 720 while still paying off the 360. You see now?

 

I'm suggesting for those that do this bad deal, to do it for the 720.

3k3
3k3

 @SolidTy your right, I forgot about the more expensive live.