We knew it was coming and now it’s official, Microsoft has announced the Xbox One S All-Digital Edition console and it arrives on May 7th. But when it comes to pricing, the story isn’t quite as clean cut as many thought it would be when this console was first uncovered.
Microsoft says that this device will cost $249.99 and that it will come bundled with Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3 and Sea of Thieves. Further, the company says that this console will always be $50 less than the Xbox One S.
It’s the second part of that statement that can be a bit confusing as there are many bundles of the Xbox One S available today that cost less than $249.99; for example, there is a bundle for $232 on Amazon that ship with one game (Battlefield V). Which makes the disc-less Xbox One S a lot less appealing unless you are specifically buying a console for Minecraft, Forza Horizon 3, and Sea of Thieves.
This makes me think that the $249.99 price point is simply the MSRP but that we will quickly see retailers slash the price to around $200 to have this console fit more logically into the Xbox family lineup. Keeping this in mind, until we see this practice applied, know that the console is $250.
And of course, there will be those out there who scream that removing the disc drive is a religious crusade against physical media but what Microsoft is doing is giving customers more options. The new console is not a required piece of hardware for anyone but only for those who only want to download their games; options are never a bad thing.
If I were to buy new hardware, the digital-only console is likely what I would pick up if I needed to replace a console as long as the actual price does eventually get close to, or below, $200. When the console does become available, it will be at select retailers which includes the Microsoft Store, Walmart, Best Buy, and Amazon; notably not on the list is GameStop.