Subsidised Xbox subscription hardware "pivotal" to Microsoft’s business

Xbox 720 will likely launch with cut-price hardware subsidised through monthly subscriptions.

That’s the impression given by Microsoft in an interview with The Wall Street Journal in which it describes such retail models as pivotal to our business” and outlines plans to roll the deals out across the whole of the US.

A $99 subscription-based 4GB Xbox 360 console with Kinect was first debuted in the US back in May, although it was only available at official Microsoft stores, of which there were only 21 in the country.

This was then rolled out to other retailers including Walmart, Toys R Us, Best Buy and GameStop the following month and Microsoft has subsequently hinted at its adoption in other territories including the UK.

Microsoft now plans to expand its offer to include the 250GB Xbox for $99 or the same model with a Kinect sensor for $149.

Microsoft’s interactive entertainment marketing manager Matt Barlow said that the company wanted to see if we would get sustained consumer excitement and willingness from partners to get this in retail” and that the response has been very positive.

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