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article imageMicrosoft to end production of Xbox 360 after 10 years of gaming

By James Walker     Apr 20, 2016 in Entertainment
Microsoft has announced it is to end production of its Xbox 360 games console over 10 years since the launch of the iconic gaming platform. Current owners will be able to use their consoles as normal as supplies begin to dwindle around the world.
Microsoft announced its decision in a post on its Xbox Wire blog today. It cited "the realities of manufacturing a product over a decade old" as the reason for the decision to stop building new Xbox 360 consoles, thanking fans for their lasting commitment to the brand.
The Xbox One superseded the Xbox 360 in late 2013 but over two years later the last-generation platform continues to remain popular with fans. Microsoft acknowledged that many Xbox 360 gamers are still active and thanked users and developers for their dedication to Xbox 360.
"The Xbox 360 helped redefine an entire generation of gaming at Microsoft," said Head of Xbox Phil Spencer. "I am incredibly proud of all of the work and dedication that went into development of the Xbox 360 hardware, services and games portfolio over the last decade. And I'm grateful to the fans for their continued passion and support."
According to Microsoft, gamers have spent over 78 billion hours playing Xbox 360 titles. Combined, over 486 billion Xbox Gamerscore points have been accumulated from 27 billion earned achievements.
Microsoft hasn't given a date for when production will cease. It confirmed it will continue to sell existing console stock through official channels and third-party retail outlets. Availability will vary depending on region. Once the Xbox 360 goes out of stock in your area, it's unlikely to ever reappear again.
Microsoft has committed to continuing to support Xbox 360 after production ends. Gamers will be able to use their consoles as normal and no backend services will be cut as a consequence. Xbox Live features will keep on functioning, game servers will stay online and Xbox 360 hardware will remain supported and in warranty. Physical games and accessories will still be available for purchase "while supplies last."
The Xbox 360 is now beginning to show its age in the face of newer consoles that have been on the market for years. Over 4,000 games have been created for it though, keeping players loyal to the platform and helping it to remain popular throughout the last decade.
The console was responsible for turning Microsoft's Xbox brand into an online-centric social gaming experience to rival Sony's PlayStation. It quickly became popular with fans and demonstrated that Microsoft's fledgling Xbox Live service has a place in gaming. Microsoft acknowledged that fans "have been critical to the success of Xbox 360" and said the console "means a lot to everyone in Microsoft."
Going forward, Microsoft will be focusing its gaming efforts on Xbox One and Windows 10. It will reveal more of its plans for gaming on these modern platforms at E3 in June and over the next few months. If you're still in the market for an Xbox 360, you might want to consider making a purchase soon, as 2016 could be your last chance to buy the previous-gen console.
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