Microsoft has announced its decision to shutter the Xbox 360’s online store and marketplace, marking a significant shift in its gaming ecosystem strategy. The company will redirect its focus towards its latest consoles and the popular subscription service, Game Pass.
The Xbox 360 Store and Xbox 360 Marketplace are set to close their virtual doors on July 29, 2024. Following this closure, gamers still utilizing the aging console will no longer have the ability to purchase and download new games, according to an announcement on Xbox’s official website.
Despite the upcoming changes, Microsoft has assured users that they will still have the opportunity to enjoy previously purchased Xbox 360 games and older titles that remain compatible with the system. This move is in line with Microsoft’s dedication to adapting to the evolving landscape of technology and the ever-changing expectations of players.
“A lot has changed since the Xbox 360 launched in 2005. Technology has evolved, expectations from players have shifted, and we are focused on making Xbox Series X|S the best place to play now and in the future,” Xbox stated in their announcement.
The decision to discontinue the Xbox 360 online store comes after Microsoft halted the production of the Xbox 360 in 2016. A year later, the company introduced Xbox Game Pass, a subscription-based gaming service accessible across consoles and Windows platforms. This service has gained immense popularity among gamers and has become a central part of Microsoft’s gaming strategy.
As part of this transition, the Movies & TV app on the Xbox 360 will also be removed, further indicating Microsoft’s determination to streamline its offerings and concentrate on its more current platforms.
The Xbox 360, widely regarded as one of the best-selling gaming consoles of all time, rivaled Sony’s PlayStation 3 during its prime. Microsoft’s sales figures showed that approximately 84 million units of the Xbox 360 were sold by 2014. However, the reporting of sales numbers ceased at that point due to the launch of its successor, the Xbox One.
With the closure of the Xbox 360 online store and marketplace, Microsoft is making a clear move towards consolidating its efforts and resources to enrich the gaming experience for users of its latest console models and the Game Pass subscription service.