What is an Xbox 360?

The Xbox 360 is a dedicated machine – 'games console' – for playing video games that connects to your television. Released in 2005, it was the successor to Microsoft's first console, simply titled the Xbox. The Xbox 360 has proved to be a big hit among enthusiast gamers and a wide range of video games are available specifically for the machine.

A newer version of the Xbox - the Xbox One - is now available to order.

The Xbox 360's key benefits and features

The first console to display high-definition (HD) images as standard, the Xbox 360 is known for its graphically impressive games.

  • There are many exciting games available for the Xbox 360, of all different types. Particularly popular are 'FPS' (first-person shooter) games such as the Halo series. Also successful on the system are the 'third-person' Gears of War games and the Call of Duty series (which is also available for other video-game systems).
  • The Xbox 360 is known for its robust online 'Xbox Live' service, which allows players to compete over the internet as well as access other services like downloading a large selection of smaller games. For access to the full online service, players pay approximately £40 a year for an Xbox Live Gold account.
  • In 2010, Microsoft released the Kinect add-on for the console. A response to the Nintendo Wii's motion-sensing capabilities, the Kinect is a black, oblong camera that is placed in front of your television. It can precisely sense the movements of anyone in front of it and completely removes the need for a controller. Kinect launched with a selection of family-friendly party and sports games.
  • The Xbox 360 has a wide range of price points, depending on the exact specifications of the machine, and whether it comes with Kinect or not. As a result, the price can be between £150 and £350. The Kinect sensor alone costs around £110.