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—Slogan used at launch.

The Xbox 360 is a seventh generation video game console developed by Microsoft. Released on November 22, 2005, it is the successor to the original Xbox, it is the second console in the Xbox family.


The Xbox 360 competed with Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nintendo's Wii as part of the seventh generation of video game consoles. It was officially unveiled on MTV on May 12, 2005, with detailed launch and game information announced later that month at the 2005 Electronic Entertainment Expo.

The Xbox 360's successor, the Xbox One was released on November 22, 2013.

On April 20, 2016, Microsoft announced that it would end the production of Xbox 360 hardware, although the company would still continue to support the platform.

New Features[edit | edit source]

The Xbox 360 also included a number of new features and add ons such as- the ability to stream music, television and films though Xbox Music, Xbox Video and third-party content services.

New wireless controllers with a number of designs, expanded hard drives and the Kinect sensor.

The release of these additional services and peripherals helped the Xbox brand grow from gaming-only to encompassing all multimedia, turning it into a hub for living-room computing entertainment.

The Xbox 360 also brings back Xbox Live with a number of improvements and new features.

Development[edit | edit source]

Known during development as Xenon, Xbox 2, Xbox FS,[1] Xbox Next, or NextBox, the Xbox 360 was conceived in early 2003.[2] In February 2003, planning for the Xenon software platform began, and was headed by Microsoft's Vice President J Allard.[2] That month, Microsoft held an event for 400 developers in Bellevue, Washington, to recruit support for the system.[2] Also that month, Peter Moore, former president of Sega of America, joined Microsoft. On August 12, 2003, ATI signed on to produce the graphic processing unit for the new console, a deal which was publicly announced two days later.[3] The following month, IBM agreed to develop the triple-core CPU for the console.[2] Before the launch of the Xbox 360, several alpha development kits were spotted using Apple's Power Mac G5 hardware. This was due to the system's PowerPC 970 processor running the same PowerPC architecture that the Xbox 360 would eventually run under IBM's Xenon processor.

Release[edit | edit source]

The Xbox 360 launched world wide in November 2005, it was in short supply at one point in many regions, including North America and Europe.

The earliest versions of the console suffered from a high failure rate, indicated by the so-called "Red Ring of Death ", necessitating an extension of the consoles warranty period. It has been found that around 54% of all Xbox 360s suffered from the Red Ring of Death.

Throughout the Xbox 360's life, Microsoft released two redesigned models of the console- Xbox 360 S (2010) and Xbox 360 E (2013).

As of June 2014, 84 million Xbox 360 units had been sold world wide. In 2009 the Xbox 360 became the sixth best selling video game console in history, despite being outsold by the Nintnedo Wii and PlayStation 3.

Retail configurations[edit | edit source]

Launch[edit | edit source]

When the Xbox 360 was first released in 2005, the console was made available in two different bundles. Similar to how the Xbox One was available with and without a Kinect. While the bundles were never officially given a name they were commonly known as the Xbox 360 Pro or Premium and the Xbox 360 Core. These bundles often included a variation of the Media Remote.

Xbox 360 Pro/Premium

Pro/Premium[edit | edit source]

The Pro/Premium was the higher end bundle, costing around $100 US more than the Core bundle and included a 60GB external hardrive.

Several years after the launch of the Pro, a 60 GB version of the console was released on August 1, 2008. A year later the model was discontinued completley.

Core[edit | edit source]

The Core model, being the cheaper out of the two launch varinats was originally released in all regions other than Japan. However the variant was eventually released in Japan in 2006, a year after the consoles original release. The Core model also shipped with a wired variant of the Xbox 360 controller rather than the wireless which was shipped with all other models.

Xbox 360 Elite

Elite[edit | edit source]

In 2007, around two years after the launch of the original Xbox 360 units, a new configuration, the Xbox 360 Elite was released. The Xbox 360 Elite was the more upper classed model and included a 120 GB external hardrive, already connected to the console. Unlike past Xbox 360 consoles, the Elite used a matte black design rather than the usual white/siliver.

The price of the Xbox 360 Elite was significanly marked down in 2009 to get rid of stock to make room for newer models.

Xbox 360 Arcade

Arcade[edit | edit source]

Some months later in 2007, after the release of the Xbox 360 Elite, the Xbox 360 Arcade was released. The Xbox 360 Arcade acted as a successor to the Xbox 360 Core bundle that was released at the launch of the console. The Arcade only had an internal storage of 256MB, but external hardrives could be purchased to expand the consoles storage.

The Xbox Live Arcade Compilation Disc was also included with all Xbox Arcade models.

Xbox 360 S

Slim[edit | edit source]

Main article: Xbox 360 S
Also known as the Xbox 360 S was a complete hardware revision of the Xbox 360 that was released in 2010. This newer model completley replaced other models available prior to its release, those being the Elite and Arcade.The S was much smaller and compared to past models and a lot quieter.

The Xbox 360 S also included a port dedicated for use with the Kinect which was released several months after the launch of the Slim model.

Xbox 360 E

E[edit | edit source]

Main article: Xbox 360 E
The final model in the Xbox 360 family was the Xbox 360 E. It was announced and released in 2013, the same year that the Xbox One was released. The E model is once again slimmer than past models and takes most of its designs from the first Xbox One model.

Software[edit | edit source]

Dashboard[edit | edit source]

See also: Xbox 360 System Software

The Xbox 360's original graphical user interface is the Xbox 360 Dashboard; a tabbed interface that features five "Blades" (formerly four blades), and was designed by AKQA. It can be launched automatically when the console boots up without a disc, or when the disc tray is ejected. However, the user may choose to launch a game automatically if a disc is inserted. A simplified version of it can also be accessed at any time via the Xbox Guide button on the gamepad. This simplified version shows the user's gamercard, Xbox Live messages and friends list. It also allows for personal and music settings, in addition to voice or video chats, or returning to the primary Dashboard from the game.

As of November 19, 2008, the Xbox 360's dashboard has changed from the "Blade" interface, to a dashboard reminiscent of that present on the Zune and Windows Media Center.

Since the console's release, Microsoft has released several updates for the Dashboard software. These updates have included adding new features to the console, enhancing Xbox Live functionality and multimedia playback cabilities, adding compatibility for new accessories, and fixing bugs in the software. The latest Dashboard update, revision 2.0.7357.0, was made available on November 19, 2008.

New Xbox Experience[edit | edit source]

Further information: Xbox Live#New Xbox Experience

New Xbox 360 Dashboard

At E3 2008, at Microsoft's Show, Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg and Marc Whitten announced the new look Xbox 360 called "The New Xbox Experience". The idea of the update is to allow people who cannot navigate the current Blade GUI, to navigate throughout the console easily. The GUI uses the Twist UI (used in Windows Media Center, Zune). The Blade interface is still used in the new Xbox Guide. The new guide allows the user to do everything he/she could do from the Dashboard itself, whether it's ejecting a disk or browsing the Marketplace, thus making it easier to navigate throughout the system.

As well as a GUI update, many new features have been put into the system's software. Firstly, the update offers the ability to install games from the disk to the hard drive, reducing load times and disk drive noise. However, the game's disk must remain in the system to run its installed version (Similar to The PS2 HD LOADER Feature)A new Community system is also built in, allowing the creation of digitalised Avatars. These Avatars can then be used for multiple activities such as sharing photos or playing Arcade games like 1 vs. 100. The update was released on November 19, 2008.[4]

While previous system updates have been stored on internal memory, this will be the first update to require a storage device. The update requires at least 128MB free space on either a memory card or a hard drive.[5] Microsoft has stated that many Core or Arcade users will not have sufficient space on their limited memory cards for the new update thus providing them with a free 512MB memory card or a discounted 20GB hard drive.[6][7]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. David Smith (June 2004). "Microsoft Narrowing Down Xbox Successor's Name?". Ziff Davis Media Inc. Archived from the original on 2007-05-17. Retrieved on 2008-07-26.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 Takahashi, Dean (2006-05-01). "Chronology of Xbox History, 2003". Mercury News. Archived from the original on September 22, 2008. Retrieved on 2006-11-02.
  3. Becker, David (2003-08-14). "ATI wins bid for next Xbox". CNET. Retrieved on 2008-07-26.
  4. Tom Bramwell (9 October 2008). "New Xbox Experience". Eurogamer. Retrieved on 2008-10-14.
  5. http://www.xboxstorageupgrade.com/hh/web/home/hhauthentication.jsp
  6. http://www.xboxstorageupgrade.com/hh/web/home/hhauthentication.jsp;jsessionid=96D23E99D79AE34DF9816B2FA069979A?ssLocale=en_US
  7. http://lastshepard.wordpress.com/2008/10/14/microsofts-nxe-storage-solution-free-512mb-memory-card-or-20-for-20gb-hdd/ (archived)

External links[edit | edit source]

Consoles and other devices
Development kits Xbox Alpha Tower IXbox Alpha Tower IIXbox Development KitXbox 360 Development KitXbox One Development Kit
Sixth generation XboxBundles
Seventh generation Xbox 360Xbox 360 SXbox 360 EBundles
Eighth generation Xbox OneXbox One SXbox One XXbox One S All-Digital EditionBundles
Ninth generation Xbox Series XXbox Series S
Limited Edition List of Limited Edition Xbox consolesXbox Launch Team editionConker Reloaded Xbox Limited EditionLimited Edition Halo: Combat Evolved XboxLimited Edition Mountain Dew XboxLimited Edition Grand Theft Auto IV Xbox 360
Cancelled Xbox PrototypeUnreleased Limited Edition Halo XboxXbox Watch
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