Microsoft slashes Xbox cost in console price war


10 Apr 2003

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In an effort to boost its sales position in Europe Microsoft has cut the cost of its Xbox for its European customers, effective from tomorrow.

It will now be sold at an estimated retail price of €209 in Ireland, €199 in continental Europe and £129.99 sterling in Britain.

It had been retailing here for €259.

Xbox now costs less than its main rival market leader Sony’s PlayStation and is neck and neck with Nintendo’s GameCube although Microsoft claims it is selling more than two to one in Europe. A spokeswoman for Microsoft told siliconrepublic.com that Xbox was not competing with Ninendo’s GameCube for second place but that the company was trying to create a product that would become the market leader.

The three competing companies have been engaging in something of a price war in recent times as they jockey for position as market leader.

Nintendo has offered some promotional discounts on its GameCube which retails for an average of €199, while Sony has been offering the PlayStation 2 console plus a game at many shops in Britain for £169 sterling and €249 in the rest of Europe.

Corporate vice-president of worldwide retail sales and marketing home entertainments division at Microsoft Peter Moore said: “We had a great Christmas and firmly established ourselves as the number two console player in this region.” This price change shows we are not content to rest on our laurels – we will continue to be aggressive in building upon this momentum throughout the year.”

By Suzanne Byrne