E3 2012: $99 Xbox subscription deal rolled out to retail

Microsoft has rolled out its experimental $99 Xbox 360 offer to GameStop and Best Buy in the US.

The deal, which offers a cut-price console to consumers who sign up to a $14.99 Xbox Live contract for two years – arrived in May but has until now only been available at Microsoft’s 21 own-brand stores.

This expansion to the programme is described as limited” in so far as it’s only rolling out to select stores and is for the time being restricted to a set number of consoles.

No doubt, though, that if it’s successful it will be rolled out on a larger scale.

Many in the industry predict that the scheme is a test bed for the next-generation Xbox, which could quite possibly be available both as on outright purchase and on a cheaper (up front, at least), subscription basis.

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