Looking around the gaming space right now, there is an awful lot of controversy surrounding Microsoft’s recently announced decision to offer its Xbox 360 4GB console with Kinect for $99. In order to get that price, customers must sign up for two years of Xbox Live Gold and pay $15 per month.
According to critics, such pricing can lead to the unraveling of the console market as we know it. Going forward, they say, customers will be forced into online services just to get better pricing on a device. What’s worse, it could see console makers push their prices up, similar to the way carriers do when customers opt to buy a smartphone contract-free, they say.