On my flight back from the MVP Summit from Seattle I had the honor of sitting next to a hardware engineer that worked on the Xbox and accessories for it and other devices like the Zune. He actually thought I worked for MS as well (I was sporting a Zune shirt and Windows Mobile bag) until I corrected him and talked about some cool things I had NDA privledge to and other things like my PSP and the accessories I had for it as well as Windows Mobile devices, UMPCs, Tablet PCs and other geek stuff. One of them being the new Xbox 360 Elite which has some new covers and quieter disposition with built-in HDMI support.
It will be coming in a nice glossy piano-black finish and silver trim like the pre-release developer boxes as well as with a black wireless controller(also available separately for $49), matching black headset, HDMI cable- for HDMI ouput, 120GB Hard drive to support Xbox Live HD movies and upcoming IPTV content that was demoed at CES 2007 (it will also be available separately for around $179 retail(US). However it won't ship with a built-in HD DVD drive, which would have been nice and easily warrant an upgrade for the suggested retail price of $479.
Also to match the color schema of the Elite the following accessories for the Xbox 360 Elite console will also be available separately:
Xbox 360 Play & Charge kit. Complete with a charging cable and a black rechargeable battery pack, the Xbox 360 Play & Charge kit allows gamers to recharge their Xbox 360 Wireless Controller without interrupting their gameplay. It is sold separately for an estimated retail price of $19.99 (U.S.).
Xbox 360 rechargeable battery (black). The rechargeable battery pack provides more than 25 hours of gameplay per charge. It is sold separately for an estimated retail price of $11.99 (U.S.).
For the official press release head here.
Now the question remains on April 29 should I purchase this for $479.99 (U.S.), upgrade my current 360, purchase a 360 core for $299 or less with the 120GB hard drive and save a few bucks or should I wait to add another Media Center Extender to the house? At least there are some options...