Microsoft has informed its retailers that it will be increasing the price of its Arcade Xbox 360 bundle by a throat-choking £30 to £160 whilst at the same time removing the five XBLA games that used to come with the gaming console.
The price increase appears to have been made in anticipation of the discontinuation of the Xbox 360 60GB bundle otherwise known as Premium. This means that only two Stock Keeping Units (SKUs) will survive with the cheaper one becoming more expensive.
Microsoft has also confirmed that many of the official accessories for the Xbox will increase by a couple of pounds due to the low Pound-to-Euro ratio. There were also unfounded rumours that the Xbox 360 Elite would drop in price as Microsoft prepares for a major push with regards to online content.
All these announcements come against the backdrop of a soon-to-come release of a slimmer and cheaper version of the Sony PS3 gaming console.
Microsoft is already mulling plans to get the Last.fm, Twitter, Facebook as well as Hulu on the Xbox 360. Doing this without a hard disk drive is virtually impossible and the price increase on the Xbox 360 could actually be a smart move by Microsoft to convince people that the console is not as good, when it comes to value for money, as its bigger brother. But then, this could backfire nastily,