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Xbox 360 Elite to Japan in October

5 Jul, 2007 By: John Latchem

Microsoft is set to launch its Xbox 360 Elite game console in Japan Oct. 11, according to Reuters. The Elite boasts a 120GB hard drive, six times the capacity of the standard Xbox 360 and twice that of Sony's PlayStation 3.

The console will sell for 47,800 yen, the equivalent of $390, compared to 29,800 for the basic Xbox 360. The basic PS3 sells for 49,980 yen, while Nintendo's Wii sells for about half that.

The Elite already is available in North America at $480.

Separately, the Associated Press reported that Microsoft has extended the warranty on the Xbox 360 to three years, owing to many of the consoles succumbing to “general hardware failure.” Fourth-quarter costs for the move could be as much as $1.15 billion.

Microsoft's entertainment and devices division, which makes Xbox, reported an operating loss of $315 million on $929 million in third-quarter sales, in large part due to the repair costs.

“We don't think we've been getting the job done,” said Robbie Bach, president of the division.

Bach said owners who paid for out-of-warranty repairs will be reimbursed, and that design changes should limit future problems with the hardware. The previous warranty lasted one year in the United States and two years in Europe.

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