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Xbox One Elite Controller Shortage, Explained

"Here's the product we totally underestimated."


Microsoft "totally underestimated" demand for the $150 Xbox One Elite controller.

That's according to Microsoft CMO Chris Capossela, who talked more about the premium controller during the latest episode of Windows Weekly (via Geekwire). He says Microsoft originally wanted to produce more, but the feedback from E3 was that $150 was too steep, so they scaled back.

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"Here's the product we totally underestimated," he said. "If I could have built 10 times the number I built, I would have. We got that feedback at E3 that it was awesome, but maybe the price was a little too high, and so that influenced how many we produced.

"On the Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving, myself and Kevin Turner our COO, and the guy who runs our stores, David Porter, we go around and visit 30 or 40 different stores," Capossela added. "Best Buy and GameStop and AT&T and Verizon and Microsoft Stores, just to see how things look, and the one thing we heard from everybody was, 'You needed to make way more of these controllers.'"

Indeed. The controllers have been sold out for a long time at most major retailers. As of today, December 28, the controllers remain unavailable at Best Buy, GameStop, Amazon, and Microsoft's own stores.

Every time Microsoft replenishes supply for the Elite controllers, they sell out "instantly," according to Xbox boss Phil Spencer.

There is another way to get your hands on an Elite controller. You can buy the $500 Xbox One Elite model that launched in November; it comes with a 1 TB console and the unique, transforming controller.

For more on the Elite controller, check out GameSpot's hands-on impressions in the video above.

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