At first we were doubtful that a edgy box appearing in a little Flash ad from Italy last night could be legit, but Microsoft just got real with the new Xbox 360. (That's all it's officially called -- just "the new Xbox 360.") It'll launch today priced for $299, while
the old Elite will stick around for $249 and the Arcade will drop to $149. The new box is crazy sexy in glossy black with touch-sensitive buttons, and Microsoft says it's "whisper quiet," with one large fan instead of two -- the new 45nm chipset undoubtedly generates less heat to begin with. On the features front, it's got integrated 2.4GHz 802.11n WiFi, five USB ports, and 250GB of storage on a removable hard drive, although it's not a standard drive or same drive as the old console, and older Memory Units won't work, either. Upgraders can use a USB-to-Xbox hard drive connector cable to migrate to the new box, however. There's also a "custom Kinect port" on the back that looks like an HTC-style ExtUSB port, and it also seems like the power supply has moved inside the case, which is a welcome change. New Xbox 360 units are shipping to retailers now, with availability expected later this week, and MS conference attendees are actually getting theirs shipped today.
If you're in Europe, don't fret, as yours is coming soon. Microsoft's official Xbox Twitter account has confirmed the console hits there on July 16.
Update: We just got the official fact sheet, check it after the break. Oh, and we're calling it the "Stealthbox" to keep all the models straight. It just feels right, you know?
Update 2: According to a Microsoft representative, the Xbox 360 Original will still be sold while there's stock, but they're not making any more of them. Once they're gone, they're gone -- and we'd assume a new $199 variant of the new design will eventually be released to fill the void.
Xbox 360 250GB
Xbox 360 is fully loaded with new features and still comes with everything you know and love. Here's a feature list to make sure you don't miss any of the newest Xbox 360 250GB parts.
Form Factor: Sleek, lean and gloss black finish with chrome accents. Place vertically or horizontally in any living room entertainment center.
Touch Sensitive Buttons: Turn the Xbox 360 video game system on/off and eject a disc with the swipe of a finger.
Whisper Quiet: Whether you're playing a DVD disc or from the hard drive, or navigating the dashboard, with the all-new and much quieter Xbox 360, the only noise you'll hear is your own laughing, cheering and playing.
Wi-Fi: Built-in 802.11n Wi-Fi for fast, easy connection to your friends and entertainment on Xbox LIVE.
Hard Drive: 250GB internal, swappable hard drive for even more storage. To access, remove the bottom panel by pushing the small tab toward the front of the console.
Kinect-Ready: Custom Kinect port on the back of the console that directly hooks up to the Kinect sensor for controller-free fun.
USB Slots: Five USB ports; three in the back of the console and two in the front for easy plug and play.
AV Cable included for standard definition TV connection.
HDMI port for high definition TV connection.
Optical Audio out port integrated on back of console for AV system connection.
Power Supply: Smaller and more efficient. Xbox 360 250GB and Xbox 360 Original power supplies are not interchangeable.
Wireless Controller: The award-winning Xbox 360 Wireless Controller matches the console in all black with color-matched thumsticks and directional pad with a touch of gloss and chrome to complete the look.
Backwards Compatible. Your favorite accessories and games will work with Xbox 360 250GB. (Xbox 360 External Hard Drives and Memory Units are not compatible.)
Accessories. Customize your Xbox 360 250GB with matching black accessories, including favorites such as Controllers, Wireless Headset, Chatpad, Quick Charge and Play & Charge Kits and more. Get a look at a few of these today.
Key Internal Components Changes:
Fan: Moved from two small fans to one larger fan for improved acoustics.
Chipset: 45 nanometer and integrated CPU and GPU.
Wi-Fi: Integrated wireless capability.