Microsoft rumored, again, to release cheaper Xbox One in 2014

A mysterious NeoGAF forum member named "ntkrnl" posted what he claimed was a ton of insider information about Microsoft's plans for the Xbox One for the rest of 2014 and beyond earlier this week. One of those info nuggets was that Microsoft could release an Xbox One that costs $399 before the end of the year, but added that it might not come with an optical drive.

Now another rumor from the usually reliable VG247.com states that Microsoft is telling trusted publishing partners that it will indeed release a new version of the Xbox One before the end of the year. This model will be priced below that of the current $499 SKU, but the story's source was unable to confirm that it would not have an optical drive.

The story did not state that this new version would be lowered all the way down to $399 which may indicate it could be priced around $450. This leaves some wiggle room that it could have some upgraded features like a larger hard drive.

The same story also claims, again via unnamed sources, that Microsoft could lower the price of the current Xbox One model down to $399, the same price as Sony's PlayStation 4, when the new SKU comes out. Microsoft is still selling a number of different versions of the Xbox 360, all with different price points, but so far it has only sold one SKU for the Xbox One.

The $499 price tag is certainly one of the biggest gaps between the Xbox One and PS4. Two UK retailers have already taken it upon themselves to lower the price of the Xbox One by the equivalent of $33, in a territory where the PS4 is reportedly outselling Microsoft's console. Microsoft recently stated it has sold 3.9 million Xbox One consoles to retail stores by the end of 2013 and sold over three million of them to consumers.

Source: VG247.com | Image via Microsoft

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the better twin said,

Of course they can. People said the same thing about the core 360 lacking a hard drive. Makes little difference in the end. If people are interested in kinect then people will buy it and devs will support it. At present though it is a big dead weight that means they can't be anywhere near price competitive with the PS4 even with weaker hardware.

Yikes! Here you go again with that weaker hardware logic. Don't get me wrong, technically, there are positives and negatives on how Sony is running their console. In any case, if it is that weak, how come it can run multiple operating systems, and it can allow you do to multiple things as well? Oh that is right, it is implementation.

I would agree with M_Lyons, MS wouldn't want to fragment this. Now, as I said, if the rumor is true, and MS is axing the BD drive, it is because MS has always believed that everything is going digital. There are lots of digital devices out there that people are using, some come with drives and some are dedicated to digital content. Gaming is heading there already.

By the way, do you even own a Xbox One?

RommelS said,

Yikes! Here you go again with that weaker hardware logic. Don't get me wrong, technically, there are positives and negatives on how Sony is running their console. In any case, if it is that weak, how come it can run multiple operating systems, and it can allow you do to multiple things as well? Oh that is right, it is implementation.

I would agree with M_Lyons, MS wouldn't want to fragment this. Now, as I said, if the rumor is true, and MS is axing the BD drive, it is because MS has always believed that everything is going digital. There are lots of digital devices out there that people are using, some come with drives and some are dedicated to digital content. Gaming is heading there already.

By the way, do you even own a Xbox One?


I don't know why you are rambling on. Its accepted that the Xbox one has slower Ram and a less powerful GPU. Your talk of 3 operating systems (which isn't correct) and implementation do nothing to change that.
I dont want to go into the whole digital argument as others have covered it plenty (data usage) but suffice to say MS themselves have said non-digital distribution is not going away anytime soon.
Finally, I dont know what owning one has to do with anything? Were you ready to camp out for whatever Microsoft released even if it was a big steaming turd?

the better twin said,

I don't know why you are rambling on. Its accepted that the Xbox one has slower Ram and a less powerful GPU. Your talk of 3 operating systems (which isn't correct) and implementation do nothing to change that.
I dont want to go into the whole digital argument as others have covered it plenty (data usage) but suffice to say MS themselves have said non-digital distribution is not going away anytime soon.
Finally, I dont know what owning one has to do with anything? Were you ready to camp out for whatever Microsoft released even if it was a big steaming turd?

Oh so you don't know that having a GDDR3 can cause high latency. Hmmmmm.

Implementation has nothing to do with it? Wow, right there just shows me how much you know about technology. You can have the newest and greatest chip out there, but if it is not implemented or optimized appropriately, it is not going to hum that way as it is intended too. Look at Android smartphones out here. Even with a core processor, it is still lagging.

Fair enough about the digital media. However, MS did also state that they believe that everything will be going to DLC.

What owning one has to do with anything? Oh there's a lot you can learn if you own one rather than just going by what you are reading or experiencing from time to time. As such, it shows that you don't even know anything about Xbox One other than what you read online.

Agreed, they could just allow voice commands through the headset (except Xbox On), it would be a lot cheaper and work fine for gamers who don't want the TV stuff.

The problem I see with removing the Blu-ray drive is that it pretty much kills the idea of the Xbox one being the "one" entertainment system as now you will need a separate DVD and Blu-ray player Even with services like Netflix the best experience still comes from a Blu-ray disc as the quality is higher in every way. People will argue that "people who want a Blu-ray player already have one!" and similar but that isn't really the point. The point is Microsoft apparently designed the whole Xbox One experience around it being the "one" entertainment system that does it all. Hell they even included HDMI pass-through for cable boxes so the "one" system thing is the core of the product but no Blu-ray drive stops it being the "one" system you need for all your entertainment needs. If they remove the Blu-ray drive your Xbox One becomes "a games console with Netflix" which is something Microsoft have been trying very hard to persuade people it is not.

who needs a br drive when you can stream/download movies? physical media is dead. I stopped buying CD's a decade ago. I don't know when the last time I bought a DVD.

InTheSwiss said,
The problem I see with removing the Blu-ray drive is that it pretty much kills the idea of the Xbox one being the "one" entertainment system as now you will need a separate DVD and Blu-ray player Even with services like Netflix the best experience still comes from a Blu-ray disc as the quality is higher in every way. People will argue that "people who want a Blu-ray player already have one!" and similar but that isn't really the point. The point is Microsoft apparently designed the whole Xbox One experience around it being the "one" entertainment system that does it all. Hell they even included HDMI pass-through for cable boxes so the "one" system thing is the core of the product but no Blu-ray drive stops it being the "one" system you need for all your entertainment needs. If they remove the Blu-ray drive your Xbox One becomes "a games console with Netflix" which is something Microsoft have been trying very hard to persuade people it is not.

Agreed. I would have no interest in an XBox without a Bluray Drive. I want as few boxes as I can...

Antoine Prince said,
who needs a br drive when you can stream/download movies? physical media is dead. I stopped buying CD's a decade ago. I don't know when the last time I bought a DVD.

You should look into bluray sales.

Antoine Prince said,
who needs a br drive when you can stream/download movies? physical media is dead. I stopped buying CD's a decade ago. I don't know when the last time I bought a DVD.

That is great but Netflix doesn't have everything that is available on DVD and Blu-ray. Also films they do have today and not always available tomorrow and if I stop paying for Netflix I have nothing. Also you just get the feature on Netflix you don't get any of the extras which is something I enjoy a lot. Not to mention the quality issues I sometimes get with Netflix during peak times when my internet connection is being maxed out with others using it or when my ISP is overloaded. When I am in London and have 70 Mbit fibre that isn't a problem but when elsewhere it sucks to suddenly have the film drop in quality (very noticeable when it drops from Super HD!) or worse buffer! None of that with a physical disc and I get better quality and the extras.

Antoine Prince said,
who needs a br drive when you can stream/download movies? physical media is dead. I stopped buying CD's a decade ago. I don't know when the last time I bought a DVD.

Oh yeah and have fun downloading that 40+GB per game! Even on fibre that isn't going to be fun and remember that in most of the world (esp. America) data caps are a big thing so even if you have >100Mbps fibre it could easily use up your whole data allowance. Sucks but that is the reality.

InTheSwiss said,

.....

100Mbit Fiber with no data cap!

I love the idea of a disc-less system as I only own two blu-ray discs now and that was to test the drive in my XBOX ONE after hearing reports online of faulty drives.

Antoine Prince said,
get rid of the bluray drive, make it digital and add 1-2 terabye. 500gig will not suffice.

bluray sales are growing and setting new sales records, specially during black friday and holiday periods. It's far from over for disc media.

stevan said,

bluray sales are growing and setting new sales records, specially during black friday and holiday periods. It's far from over for disc media.


This. Just because "some" people stream only doesn't mean the majority does. Bluray isn't going anywhere for quite some time.

i think the main problem is with internet caps. Most ISP's in england have unlimited downloads, when you buy the more expensive packages, for me ill be looking at either BTs upto 76Mit broadband (speed checker says i should get 66Mbit out of that) or go for 120Mbit virgin media but i hear it can be heavily traffic managed at peak hours but still getting 40Mbit, have wait fo the rest of my estate to be built first but the same cnt be said for the rest of europe or america i think in some places america have some horrendous caps or face paying a big premium for alot/unlimited downloads

Not everyone can afford to download 40GB a game cus that could exceed there usage allowance or be a huge part of it. If they do remove the bluray drive i think it should be offered in select countrys that can download it cus a smart bluray player in england is easily £50, one with wifi bout £80. Not expensive at all, when the PS3 launched they were like £1000 so PS3 was considered cheap bluray player

I don't understand why you guys are debating the optical drive exclusion, there would still be the choice of an xb1 with a drive for a higher cost or one without. Theres nothing to debate grab the one you want and be done with it.

In respect to Kinectless, not going to happen.

MS wants Kinect to be an integral part of the games / xb1 experience and I think theres a lot of potential there over the life of the console but devs won't invest money into a niche accessory (which is what it would become if they removed it), if they know every xb1 has Kinect then its worth them considering / investing in how it could enhance or change their games experience.

Well we see the usual arguing back and forth about how terrible MS is and how the Xbox is so terrible, blah blah blah.

Meanwhile, in the real world, the X1 is selling great. It is not selling as much as the ps4, but its hard to tell how much of that is due to the ps4 being available in so many more markets vs the X1, so unless MS has hard sales data to tell them otherwise, I doubt they would make any moves to correct poor sales until they see the launch numbers in other territories.

If this rumor is true then it seems clear that MS wants to offer cheaper options to customers as soon as possible, regardless of what their sales are currently.

As far as what they should remove, its clear that some people here want Kinect removed. they would just love for that to happen, not because they want an X1, oh no, but because that would be so entertaining to watch.

For all the flack that Kinect gets, MS has made it a feature of the X1, not a separate piece. Selling it as an add-on just wont get them the developer attention or exposure they want. Kinect is so integrated into the system experience that if you remove it, you remove possible features to sell to customers and it would require changes to the OS/UI. Having it in the bundle hurts no one except MS who has to eat the costs in order to price the console properly.

So yeah, I would wager that MS would be willing to lose a bit of money on each console if they had to sell a single SKU at $399 without losing Kinect.


There's a few assumptions in your post, specifically about the number of regions and how the sales are based on that number. Sales for both consoles would not be near to being equal if both were available in the same number of regions. I can hear it now, after a few years, "well, the PS4 is only ahead because it's available in 70 regions, compared to Xbox's 65".

That'd be worse than comparing sales of the PS3 to a console that came out one year before in NA or 18 months in EU but acting like they came out on the same day. /s

Also, I would be interested in a Kinect-less bundle. I refuse to purchase a system where a large portion of the overall bundle would go unused. It's not like it's a spare HDMI cable that I wouldn't use since I have a few lying around, but rather, a $100 piece of hardware that'd rot in my closet. I might as well as light a Benjamin on fire.

Please make one for just Xbox Music, Video, Netflix, and other Apps!! (maybe basic games as well) - compete with apple/google TV!!!!!

its pretty simple. give me a x one without kinect and at 399 and ill buy 2 right now. can you imagine how many more xbox's they would have sold if it was 399 from the get go. probably on par with the ps4 or maybe even surpassing it. its a shame too.

A Kinect less Xbox for ~£100 cheaper and I'd have bought an Xbone at launch.
Right now, I'm going to stay with the 360 until the games stop coming out for it, around 2017 ..and STILL won't get an Xbone if it comes with Kinect

I think it's pretty obvious that there will probably be hardware revisions by the end of the year for both of the consoles. Most consoles have a few different iterations to address issues encountered with the first version that they didn't find in testing. The Xbox 360, PS1, PS2, PS3 are just recent consoles that had hardware revisions that totally changed how they looked and in some instances, performed. There are going to be problems with any new console that are just impossible to anticipate in the testing phase because of the shear amount of units produced and sold when they're actually released to the public. That's why I always wait at least 6 months or so before buying a new console.

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