Microsoft announces 499 Xbox One Elite Bundle with hybrid hard drive

first_imgLast week Phil Spencer made it clear that we should not expect a new, smaller Xbox One to launch in 2015. However, he never said we wouldn’t be getting a new (not smaller) Xbox One in time for the holidays. And that’s exactly what we are getting in the form of the Xbox One Elite Bundle.Major Nelson has posted details of the new machine, which will cost $499 and be available starting November 3. Should we expect Xbox One sales to dry up between now and then? Probably, as the updated package is certainly worth waiting for.The new bundle will include an Xbox One fitted with a 1TB hybrid drive. That means a combination of standard hard drive with a small amount of solid state flash memory. The end result being load times that are greatly improved and the time from energy saving mode to playing a game being cut by 20%.If that’s not enough to tempt a purchase, Microsoft has also decided to ship the Xbox Elite Wireless Controller in the box. This is the much improved controller that is fully-customizable, including hair trigger locks, interchangeable paddles, and an Xbox accessories app so you can tweak it to your tastes. On its own this controller costs $149.99.The existing 1TB Xbox One costs $399, meaning this new Elite version wouldn’t be worth the extra $100 for the hybrid hard drive alone. However, the inclusion of the Elite controller actually makes it a good value proposition if you intended to pick up the controller separately anyway.For existing Xbox One owners who have no intention of buying the console again, Microsoft is going to tempt you with a new controller purchase instead. The Xbox One Special Edition White Wireless Controller would win a longest name competition, sports a white, gold, and black color scheme, has improved grip texture, and costs $64.99 exclusively from GameStop.This controller is just a standard Xbox controller that has the recent modifications Microsoft carried out, including a separate 3.5mm headphone jack next to the expansion port.The hybrid hard drive could make a big difference to the load times for games on the Xbox One. I’m sure Microsoft will demonstrate that in the run up to launch as well as using it in advertising to differentiate itself from the PS4. Unfortunately, by not launching until November I suspect Xbox One sales are going to suffer during September.last_img read more