Microsoft promises more Xbox 360 units to retail

Xbox 360 News

In previous articles we've argued whether poor hardware availability or the weak line-up of launch titles has hurt Microsoft's new Xbox 360 console more. Microsoft have been promising to solve the availability problem for a while now; a recent announcement has finally given us a time-frame.

Microsoft's product launch has been dogged by shortages of the Xbox 360 console, which they like to attribute to high demand. Sony, of course, have done a great job at 'proving' that in Japan the new console has been selling far fewer units per week than the old Xbox 1 did at launch - taking longer to sell out the limited available units.

Whether or not Xbox 360 has generated less excitement that its predecessor, there's no doubt that there's a general shortage of units for sale. Sony's PSP was plagued with the same problem, and while some favored retailers had stock, others were left waiting for weeks.

The demand for Xbox 360 units has led some people to pay insane sums for them on auction sites. However, prices have now dropped to more realistic levels, creating the impression that either demand has slacked off, or more consoles are available through normal retail channels.

Speaking at the DICE Summit, Peter Moore, Vice President of Microsoft's Entertainment division, announced that Within the next four to six weeks, anybody will be able to walk into a store and buy an Xbox 360. Moore also alluded that all of the original system preorders have been filled and units that are shipping now are intended for shelf stock.

It sure is nice to know that three months after launch in November, the pre-orders have finally been filled. Everyone except Sony must be hoping that this will see the start of a drop in real-world Xbox 360 prices. I'm sure everyone will be watching how sales progress very carefully. If previous behaviour is anything to go by, any evidence that suggests a lull in customer enthusiasm will instantly be siezed on and announced as a failure of the product by Sony.