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Xbox 360 HD-DVD drive to retail for GBP 199

The Xbox 360 won’t benefit from a price cut this Christmas - but instead a HD-DVD and Premium console package is due - spearheading a marketing drive of console bundles available from November.

The Premium Xbox 360 wonât benefit from a price cut this Christmas - but instead a HD-DVD and console package is due, spearheading a marketing drive of console bundles available from November.

Retail sources have indicated to GamesIndustry.biz that Microsoft is currently planning to price the standalone HD-DVD drive at GBP 199 (293 Euro), and to package it with two HD-DVD movies. The sources also suggested that Microsoft will bundle the Premium console and next-generation movie player together for under GBP 400 (589 Euro) — and that the price could even be as low as GBP 375 (552 Euros).

Next-generation movie support is considered a unique selling point of the PlayStation 3, but Microsoftâs HD-DVD bundle could retail around GBP 50 (74 Euro) cheaper than Sonyâs machine, which features the rival Blu-ray movie format.

UK distributor Gem is already offering Premium Xbox 360s with a copy of Project Gotham Racing 3 and two wireless controllers for GBP 299.

Itâs expected an official Premium bundle will be made available in early November, with a newly released triple-A third-party title included.

Microsoft recently reduced the price of the Xbox 360 Core package, after many retailers had already taken a similar intiative.

With the pressure to compete with Sony over the Christmas market no longer a threat for Europe, Microsoft looks set to capitalise with a range of SKUs to help grow its installed base in the region.

Microsoft did not respond to requests for comment.

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Matt Martin

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Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.

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