Tech News and Opinions (by Paul Spain)

Xbox One to launch November for NZ$749

, posted: 11-Jun-2013 08:23

In Los Angeles this morning Microsoft shared launch details, pricing, a reserve program, a special commemorative bundle and accessories for the upcomign Xbox One gaming console and home entertainment hub.

The Xbox One will become available in New Zealand from November 2013. Microsoft hopes the new Xbox will be the leading all-in-one entertainment system for the living room - introducing a new experiences for games, music, live TV, movies, sports, apps and Skype. All able to be controlled in various manners including via voice recognition.

Every Xbox One system sold will include the new Xbox One console - which features a 500GB hard drive, Blu-ray player and built-in Wi-Fi - the new Kinect, one Xbox One Wireless Controller and a 14-day trial of Xbox Live Gold for new members. The Xbox One launch bundle will be available for $749 in New Zealand.

To celebrate the launch of Xbox One, Microsoft is also introducing a limited-edition commemorative bundle to fans that reserve the system at major retailers. Reserving the commemorative bundle ensures the ability to purchase the new system on launch day. Each commemorative bundle will include an Xbox One system that comes in premium black packaging with a limited edition Xbox One Day One wireless controller, as well as a unique commemorative Day One Achievement.

Gamers who reserve the following exclusive Xbox One Day One edition launch titles, available in limited quantities at major retailers while supplies last, will receive special bonus content:

  • "Ryse: Son of Rome." Exclusive multiplayer map and sword with bonus attributes.
  • "Forza Motorsport 5" Access to four cars tuned to the top of their class.
  • "Kinect Sports Rivals" Exclusive sporting equipment that separates your Champion from the rest of the world.
  • "Dead Rising 3" Exclusive Frank West and Chuck Greene Tribute Packs with bonus attributes.

In addition, as a message of thanks to the millions of Xbox fans around the world for their passion and loyalty, Microsoft announced that every qualifying Xbox Live Gold member - new or existing - will receive two free Xbox 360 game downloads per month starting July 1 until Dec. 31, 2013, including popular titles such as "Halo 3" and "Assassin's Creed II." And to celebrate E3 in the month of June, Xbox Live Gold members will receive a free download of "Fable III." For a limited time gamers can also get a Day One 12-month Xbox Live Gold membership and play "Killer Instinct: Round One," with the exclusive Shadow Jago character, on Xbox One. Players will also receive a commemorative Day One membership card.

New Accessories

Launching alongside Xbox One this November, an updated line up of accessories will also be made available:

  • Xbox One Wireless Controller. The Xbox controller is refreshed with more than 40 technical and design innovations. Updated directional pad, thumb sticks and contours deliver greater precision and control, while new vibrating impulse triggers offer precise fingertip feedback, bringing an unprecedented level of gameplay immersion. The Xbox One Wireless Controller is designed to work in concert with the new Kinect, allowing the two to be paired automatically to create seamless player syncing.
  • Xbox One Play & Charge Kit. This kit includes a lithium ion rechargeable battery pack that fits inside the Wireless Controller as well as a charging cable that connects from the Controller to the console. Gamers can play on and on without having to buy a single disposable battery. The new Play & Charge Kit charges twice as fast as its Xbox 360 counterpart and charges during gameplay or when the console is in standby mode. The Kit is available for standalone purchase or as part of the Wireless Controller with Play & Charge Kit bundle
  • Xbox One Chat Headset. A must-have for fans of online gaming, the new Xbox One Chat Headset, wired to the controller, is designed for long gaming sessions and clear voice chat. With a lightweight and comfortable new design, the mono chat headset features wideband digital audio and a unidirectional microphone. Gamers will love not having to take their hands off the controller to access the microphone mute and volume controls.

Microsoft have also revealed that an updated Xbox 360 is being launched that follows the design styling of the Xbox One. Retail pricing is NZ$279 for the 4GB Xbox 360, NZ$399 for the 250GB Xbox 360, and US$399 for the 4GB Xbox 360 Kinect Bundle.

Stay current on the latest technology happenings by following Paul Spain on Twitter (@paulspain) or other social networks, and by listening to the NZ Tech Podcast.

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