Surprising ... well, surprising exactly no one, Microsoft has announced a $100 price cut on its Xbox 360 Elite model, bringing the 120GB console down to price (if not feature) parity with Sony's recently revealed PS3 Slim. While the Elite will take the place of the 60GB Pro at $300 beginning this Friday (that's tomorrow!), the Pro will enjoy a temporary $50 price drop. We say "temporary" because, once those are sold out, that's it. The hard drive-less Xbox 360 Arcade unit remains at $200.
While this $300 Xbox 360 Elite may have a fancy new package (see above) it's the same ol' Elite inside the box. But the rest of the bundle isn't quite the same: taking a page out of Sony's PS3 handbook, this cheaper package ditches HD cables entirely (accessory sales ahoy!) in favor of bundling a standard AV connector. Want HDMI? Get thee to Monoprice.
Most disappointing is that Microsoft continues to leave WiFi out of the Xbox, a console that – more than any other – excels in the online department. Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg told Joystiq, "We have not announced any change to our accessory pricing as part of this announcement." In other words, the WiFi adapter is not only missing from the console but, at $100, it's still insultingly expensive. Despite our misgivings about some of Microsoft's cost control measures, a $100 price drop on the 120GB Elite is nevertheless a welcome change ...
... even if it's just (barely) keeping pace with Sony's WiFi-packing, Blu-ray having PS3 Slim. Look for more from our chat with Greenberg later today.