Backstage: Xbox 360 and the iPod, part deux
When we last checked in with the Xbox 360 rumor mill, Microsoft was supposedly considering the platform as a potential challenger to Apple’s iPod: a game console with a portable storage device that also serves as a music player. If the latest whispers we’ve heard prove true, the company’s impending strategy is going to be even more Apple-influenced than we’d expected. You’ve probably already seen the shots of the console, which has widely been described as highly Applesque in person, but what’s coming next are the commercials and the spin. Apparently, the Xbox 360’s going to be pitched globally as the “must-have” gadget of the year (hear that, iPod and PSP?), and its music functionality is going to be a major emphasis of the campaign. Early shots of one side of the system suggest that a 40GB hard drive is in the offing, if nothing else.
The only hard part to swallow is what we’ve heard recently about the company’s earlier plan to sell two versions - one at $299, one at $399 with the portable drive - with 80% of the initial consoles being the more expensive one. Now we’re hearing that the company’s (wisely) skipping the spooky $399 price point, but - and here’s the part we’d call “impossible” - still planning to include the portable drive for the lower price. Sure, Microsoft’s accustomed to losing money on these things (billions of dollars, literally, on the first Xbox), but is it really ready to eat $100 or so per unit for a pocketable 40GB hard drive? It’s almost unimaginable, except for a company that’s looking to consolidate two second-place divisions (music and Xbox) under one line item for purposes of bleeding money (and desperately fighting for market share).
We’ll see. The debut is only a week away at this point, but we’re betting that the machine ships with a smaller drive - or none at all. Microsoft’s not dumb enough to get stuck fighting hard drive component prices twice in a row, is it?
If you have a comment, news tip, advertising inquiry, or coverage request, a question about iPods or accessories, or if you sell or market products, read iLounge's Comments + Questions policies before posting, and fully identify yourself if you do. We will delete comments containing advertising, astroturfing, trolling, personal attacks, offensive language, or other objectionable content, then ban and/or publicly identify violators. Wondering why we're talking about something other than iPods? Check the Archives: Backstage has been here and kicking it since 2004.
- First-party Apple apps updated en masse for iOS 8
- Logitech debuts Harmony Living Home line
- Apple TV software updates to 7.0 with Beats Music channel and redesigned look
- Apple HealthKit not ready for prime time?
- New Cook interview provides insight on Apple Watch development
- Apple releases iOS 8
- Report: Apple to unveil new iPads on October 21
- Foxconn struggling to meet demand for iPhone 6
- Apple to require app-specific passwords for third-party apps in iCloud
- Apple posts guide for moving content from Android to iPhone
- Apple Inc. iOS 8
- ZeroChroma Folio-Slide for iPad mini
- Zoom iQ6 XY Stereo Microphone for iPhone + iPad
- Bowers & Wilkins P5 Series 2 headphones
- Logitech Bluetooth Multi-Device Keyboard K480
- Cambridge Audio Bluetone 100 Bluetooth Speaker
- Cambridge Audio Go V2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- Soundfreaq Double Spot SFQ-09 Wireless Speaker
- iHome iBN6 Waterproof Bluetooth Speaker
- Grace Digital Ecostone Bluetooth Speaker
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 8.0
- Multi-Editorial: On Apple’s iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus + Apple Watch
- What’s New In Apple TV 7.0
- What’s New in iTunes 12
- iLounge Picks: Five Great Summer Party Speakers
- Editorial: Endings And Beginnings
- Live From CE Week 2014: Brand New iPad, iPhone + Mac Accessories!
- What’s New In iOS 8 For iPad, iPhone + iPod touch
- iLounge Multi-Editorial: WWDC 2014’s iOS 8, OS X Yosemite + More
- The Complete Guide to Apple TV Channels