Analyst firm Piper Jaffray has released a new advisory which suggests possible estimates for the forthcoming launch of Microsoft's Xbox 360 next-gen console, due to debut worldwide in November.
According to Piper Jaffray's initial estimates, as reported via Forbes Magazine, the firm believes that by the end of 2005, 1 million Xbox 360 units will ship in North America, 400,000 in Europe, and 200,000 units in Japan. In addition, the research firm expects 15 games to be available at the console's launch, and 25 to 40 games before the end of the year, and also noted that there are more than 160 Xbox 360 games in development worldwide.
Finally, Piper Jaffray made a bold stab at predicting the exact pricing for the console, suggesting that a bare bones Xbox 360 will retail for $299, but an enhanced hardware and accessories package will appear in store for $399, and will include "additional hardware components (e.g., hard-drive option, extra controller, memory option)." The firm suggests that many core gamers will likely be tempted by the more expensive package.
This initial $299 figure ties in with retail reports from Wal-Mart employees in the U.S. this week, with sources claiming that internal store information indicated that the Xbox 360 would launch on November 4th at $299, with games costing $59.99 each. However, pricing information and precise launch date for the Xbox 360 have still not been officially confirmed by Microsoft.