Microsoft has dropped the official retail price of its Xbox One console below £300 for the first time, as it struggles to compete with Sony's rival PlayStation 4.
When Microsoft confirmed it would launch the Xbox One with mandatory Kinect sensor bundle at £429.99 back in June 2013
, many thought it was too high a price for the device. The company's troubles increased when Sony responded with a £349.99 launch price for the PS4, handily beating Microsoft's RRP by cancelling plans to bundle its own camera system with the console. Coupled with some missteps on the DRM front and on-paper lower specifications, the Xbox One has struggled to compete with the PS4 - a fact that has seen several shifts from Microsoft, including the launch of a solus console without Kinect bundle and an official price drop to £329.99 in September last year.
Now, Microsoft has trimmed even more off the price with an official RRP cut to just £299.99 - the first time the RRP has dropped below the £300 mark. Described by a Microsoft spokesperson to trade outlet MCV
as 'a UK-only retail promotion
,' the new price is for the Kinect-free console with a single controller and no bundled game. The deal is to be advertised nationally, but many retailers have already launched their own bundle deals which undercut the RRP considerably: UK retailer Game launch a weekly deal ahead of the official price cut for an Xbox One solus pack with Need for Speed, Halo: Master Chief Collection and Ori at £299, while supermarket Sainsbury's had a similar pack of an Xbox One solus with Halo: Master Chief Collection and a choice of one game from Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Battlefield Hardline, or FIFA '15 for £289.99 in-store.
The new pricing brings the Xbox One below the rival PS4, which is available for around £320 without game or £340 with Grand Theft Auto V from UK retailers.