Fare Thee Well Xbox 360 for I knew you for an awesome 7 1/2 years!
Earlier this week, Xbox Division Chief Phil Spencer, announced that Microsoft has decided to cease manufacturing the 10 year old Xbox 360 console.
I think this caught most people by surprise because there were no tips or leaks that such a decision was coming about the Xbox 360 but, as Phil Spencer pointed out, it makes a lot of sense.
"Xbox 360 means a lot to everyone in Microsoft. And while we’ve had an amazing run, the realities of manufacturing a product over a decade old are starting to creep up on us. Which is why we have made the decision to stop manufacturing new Xbox 360 consoles. We will continue to sell existing inventory of Xbox 360 consoles, with availability varying by country."
Xbox Live services, games, accessories, and support will continue to be provided to Xbox 360 owners as they are right now and Spencer did not make any specific commitment for when that might end.
Of course, efforts that Microsoft has made in the last year or so with Backwards Compatibility of Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One console means many of those titles will still have a console home as Xbox 360 owners upgrade to the next generation hardware down the road.
I never owned an original Xbox and only joined the console gaming community in the fall of 2008 when I purchased an Xbox 360. It is very likely that I would have avoided the purchase of a gaming console for a few more years if not for Electronic Arts.
It was in 2008 that EA decided to release the last version of Tiger Woods for PC which was one of my favorite games and one I always purchased on release date. That year, when the next version of Tiger Woods was being released only to the consoles, I was on the outside looking in and that was the catalyst for me to make the console leap.
Turns out that was a good choice because the next year EA announced they would also drop Madden NFL from PC, along with several other titles, and since that was another game title I always grabbed on release date I was not going to be missing out.
The Xbox 360 was a solid console for me and one I really enjoyed owning. When I bought mine it was well after changes had been made in manufacturing to prevent the Red Ring of Death (RROD) that plagued so many of the early versions of the product. I watched as the Xbox 360 grew from a pure gaming platform into an entertainment center with streaming video becoming a normal function of the console.
It was those efforts on Xbox 360 that helped to lay the framework for what Xbox One would deliver when it was released in the fall of 2013 with its full suite of gaming, entertainment, video and now integrated television viewing.
Yes, I know many hammered Microsoft very hard for the entertainment focus on the Xbox One when it was announced in 2013, but today I doubt there are many people who do not take advantage of those very options on a regular basis with their console. Even Sony's PlayStation console is becoming an entertainment console.
That entertainment ground work, and yes gaming is also entertainment, that began with the Xbox 360 lives on in the Xbox One console today and will for many years.
So did you own an Xbox 360? How did that relationship start for you?