Microsoft has announced that the subscription based deal that will allow you to purchase a 4GB Xbox 360 for $99 US will be coming to two major North American outlets. Gamestop and Best Buy will both be offering the subscriptions (at participating stores), before now you were only able to buy the $99 Xbox 360 at a Microsoft store.
The deal is that you can buy a 4GB Xbox 360 with Kinect for $99 but you have to agree to sign up for a two year subscription of Xbox Live Gold that will run you $15 a month. The end result is paying $460 in the long run for something that you would pay $420 upfront. Not to mention that you will only be receiving the 4GB Xbox 360 which is basically a rip off to begin with, considering you will need to buy a new hard drive in the near future.
The bigger concern is like I posted in an earlier article here, the deal only being at a Microsoft store was the test run. Microsoft will most likely be implementing this subscription program anywhere they can. In addition, I have no doubt that the next generation Xbox console Microsoft will push this type of subscription based pricing on everyone.
It will be interesting to see if Microsoft can get gamers to go along with subscription based consoles. You pay less up front but more in the long run, but since people are use to doing that with cell phones the general public may be more accepting of this pricing policy. Me personally I hate having extra monthly payments, so I will probably never sign up for something like this. How many of you like this subscription based policy, and would you be willing to buy the next Microsoft console the same way?