Microsoft’s Xbox Series X looks like being quite the powerhouse. It’s an 8K monster of a console, original previewed at E3 last year and now confirmed to go on sale in November 2020.
It promises to be four times as powerful as the original Xbox One X. Indeed, Microsoft has billed it as the “fastest, most powerful games console ever” (though it might be biased). It will have a new ‘tall tower’ design, new wireless controller and a snappy new interface that’s said to load the Xbox Home screen 50% faster than last Xbox OS. In other words, look out, PS5.
But how much will the Xbox Series X cost? When do pre-orders open? Will there be any deals at launch? And what about bundles?
We’ve rounded up all the rumours regarding the Xbox Series X price and exact launch date, so you know what to expect. Time to start saving.
Xbox Series X price: recent history
Microsoft is yet to announce the price of the Xbox Series X but the most recent rumoured suggestion is a supposed leak from a retail insider with a screengrab showing the Xbox Series X listed at an eye-watering $599. The hope for Xbox fans will be that there’s little truth to that rumour.
In the meantime, we can speculate based on historical pricing.
The Xbox line started life with the original Xbox, back in 2001. It cost £300/$300 when it launched. This was followed by 2004’s Xbox 360, which originally cost £210/$300 for the entry-level model.
Then came the Xbox One range. The original Xbox One launched in 2013, and cost £429/$400 (without the Kinect add-on). This was followed by the Xbox One S in 2016, which went for £249/$300, and then the Xbox One X in 2017 for £450/$500.
We’d expect a significant markup for the new console, but could it tip over the £500/$550 price point? We’d be surprised, but it is supposedly the most powerful games console ever…
The Sony’s PS5 is rumoured to cost about that much, which isn’t a surprise. Neither Sony nor Microsoft will want to be undercut by its arch rival, so we wouldn’t be surprised to see the two machines to carry very similar price tags.
But if that sounds extortionate to you, then all is not lost. Microsoft is said to be readying a stripped-back, lower-specced iteration of Xbox Series X that should be considerably easier on the wallet.
Xbox Series X price: cheaper digital edition
Rumours abound that Microsoft is prepping a digital-only version of its next-gen console in order to lower the barrier to entry, the Xbox Series S. The lack of a Blu-ray disc drive would mean games could only be downloaded, not physically loaded into the console. That would mean more people could enjoy the games and most of the features for less money.
This console was known as its codename Lockhart, but now appears to have taken the moniker Xbox Series S (following on from the Xbox One S). Microsoft hasn’t made an official announcement yet regarding this console, but there is evidence direct from Microsoft itself that it exists.
There’s plenty of unofficial evidence, too. An anonymous tipster in the US recently claimed to have acquired an unreleased Xbox Series X controller. According to the leaker, the packaging officially confirms the Xbox Series S’ existence.
The Xbox Series S would go head to head with Sony’s PS5 Digital Edition. But, unlike the PS5 Digital Edition, it will not be the same machine as its sibling just minus the disc drive. Its thought that the Xbox Series S could be less powerful than the Series X, which could lower its price significantly.
As for how much the Xbox Series X will cost, the latest rumours suggest it will be around £250/$250-$275, about half the cost of the Xbox Series X. Tempted, or do you still want the full-fat version?
Buying games on disc could get even more expensive. Publisher 2K has already announced that its upcoming basketball game NBA 2K21 will cost $70 (£65) on the Xbox Series X, just as it will on the PS5. That’s a full $10 more than on the previous generation of consoles. Expect $70 games to be the new normal.
Xbox Series X: impact of global issues
Microsoft recently confirmed that the Xbox Series X will launch in November 2020. While, it looks like the coronavirus won’t see any major delays to the console, we do know that Xbox’s flagship title Halo Infinite won’t make the console launch. Unfortunately, it has been delayed until 2021.
Xbox Series X price vs PlayStation 5 price
The PlayStation 5 is expected to cost between £400/$400 and £500/$500 when it launches around the same time as the Xbox Series X. This means it could be significantly cheaper than the Xbox Series X if the rumour about the Xbox costing $599 is correct. But remember, all prices are just leaks, rumours and guesses at the moment, as nothing has been made official.
More recently, there’s been speculation that US electronics retailer Best Buy might have revealed the prices of both next-gen consoles on its 2020 consoles web page. This leak suggested Best Buy is set to offer an 18-month financing option on purchases of $499 and up. If true, we could see both the base model Xbox Series X and PS5 hit shelves at $499. Of course, it could also be a glitch in Best Buy’s website.
Sony and Microsoft have a long history of price wars – don’t forget, the PS4 undercut the Xbox One by a significant amount. Could it history repeat itself? Perhaps, but while price is of course a major factor in a console’s success, it’s far from the only one.
Console manufacturers will recoup a lot of their investment through licensing and subscriptions to their respecting online gaming services too, so the more households that own their console, the better. And one way to help this is by offering the machine at a lower price.
Whatever their relative prices, expect a fierce 8K console war this winter. Which should be good news for gamers everywhere.
Xbox Series X pre-orders
Microsoft hasn’t yet opened pre-orders for the Xbox Series X or Xbox Series S. We expected pre-orders to go live following the E3 games conference, but the June conference was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Sony has made the first step towards pre-orders, and invited PlayStation fans to register to buy a PS5. But there’s only a limited number of consoles on offer, and successful applicants will be handpicked by Sony.
Hopefully we won’t have to wait much longer for Microsoft to start its Series X pre-order process, especially now that it has officially confirmed that the new Xbox console will launch in November. As for the exact date, it’s not yet been announced. However, a recent leak points to Friday 6th November.
Want to be first to know when pre-orders have opened? Retailers including Argos, Best Buy and Target will let you sign up to be notified when pre-orders go live, so you can put some money down and guarantee your place in the next-gen console queue.
Xbox Series X price: game bundles
The Xbox Series X has a lot of exciting games confirmed for it but only the blockbuster titles will be offered as bundles.
Having said that, some of the biggest titles are usually partnered with a new console. This year’s instalments include FIFA 21, Fortnite, Rainbow Six Siege and Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, all of which are confirmed for the new console.
Halo Infinite should would likely have been the most-wanted launch title, and the most popular bundle, but 343 Industries, the studio in charge of the game, recently announced that they had made the “difficult decision” to delay its release until 2021.
We can also expect the Xbox Series X and Series S to come bundled with accessories like wireless controllers and subscriptions to the online gaming platform Xbox Live. Stay tuned, and we’ll bring you more as we get it.