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Rumor: Microsoft Planning to End the Xbox Brand

Brandon Thompson: "Microsoft wasn’t kidding when they said they planned on launching Natal like an entirely new console. It appears that the company intends to finish off the Xbox name after the Xbox 360. This is obviously a surprise considering the time and money that goes into building an identifiable brand name in the video game industry."

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vgchica2993d ago

Makes sense. Sony has bucked the trend by going Playstation 1,2,3 etc. I wouldn't be surprised.

vgn242993d ago (Edited 2993d ago )

Nintendo did it for a while - Nintendo Entertainment System, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo 64. The Gamecube was the first one to go off track.

Edit: Sorry just read the part about teamxbox.com.

Conloles2993d ago Show
TheBand1t2993d ago (Edited 2993d ago )

Only thing that can hold the PC back is devs who don't want to push it, not consoles.

I never heard of consoles last gen holding PC back, why on earth would they now?

Theonik2992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

Nah, it was "Nintendo Gamecube" officially. The Wii was the first Nintendo system without Nintendo in the tittle.

SlaughterMeister2992d ago

@1.1 - "Nintendo" is the name of the company that makes the product. If you're going to say something like that, consider that the PlayStation is actually called "Sony PlayStation", and X-Box is actually called "Microsoft X-Box". Etc.

@1.1.3 - Same for you.

Theonik2992d ago

@1.1.4
So the "Entertainment System"? The "Super Entertainment System"? The "64"? Nintendo had always incorporated the company name on their console tittles. Case in point; look at the boxart for the NGC Vs the 360. Notice that the Gamecube template includes "Nintendo" in the platform tittle whereas the 360 doesn't. Same applies to Sony neither MS or Sony mention their consoles with their company name as the brand name. Nintendo before the Wii had associated their company name as their brand name. (further proof from Nintendo's Twillight princess anouncement notice how Reggie calls the NGC)

Hideo_Kojima2992d ago

Like I said before I doubt it...

if this was true Microsoft would have started to back Windows Vista PC gaming a lot lot more than it does already.

Otherwise they are just pulling in new customers into the console gaming and once your used to consoles its hard to go back to PC gaming.

Therefore if they drop out a lot of the first time console owners who bought xbox 360 will just go out and buy ps4 or whatever nintendo release next (which may be graphically good like the gamecube was for its time).

Anon19742992d ago

The other rumor I heard recently was that Microsoft was going to break up the entire Entertainment and Devices Division. Financial analysts had noted that, when the question was put to them point blank they refused to acknowledge the division would even exist past the summer.

Dumping the Xbox brand could just be part of a larger shakeup of the entire division. If they break up the division, maybe the games section will have it's own division instead of being lumped in with mobile phones, Office for Mac, Zune, etc.

However, Microsoft has so much invested in the Xbox brand I think it would be a shame to waste that, but on the flip side of the coin it might help shake off the stench of console hardware failures that undoubtedly holds back the 360 today.

The Lazy One2992d ago

That's doubly true now that they're actually making money off of it. They're still in the red, but it's stupid to kill something when it starts making money. If they were going to kill it at any time it would have been when RROD first happened.

xDaRkModEx2992d ago

@1.1.5 theoink
Well i guess is because Sony and Microsoft sell things other than games and Nintendo is just a gaming company.

wxer2992d ago Show
Raz2992d ago

Re-branding is not the same as dumping a brand. It's just giving it a paint job and a new name. Which makes perfect sense, because "XBOX" is still plagued by association with hardware errors.

But give it a new name and logo, and you've got a blank slate...except you get to keep everything you already had going. The new name won't have any of the old associations, but the whole division essentially stays the same.

I call weaksauce whitewash - either that or complete BS.

Theonik2992d ago

Most definitely. i was merely commenting in reply to 1.1 as a correction. Also Nintendo didn't always make games so you know. They used to have sex motels at some point. Yet they were able to become synonymous with gaming at a point without re-branding.

Bigpappy2992d ago

Xbox is a strong brand. They will no touch it anytime soon. Remember guys: They did state clearly that this was a rumor. Maybe they will call the packaged (360 + Natal) = Wave, but Xbox is and will be the brand.

xDaRkModEx2992d ago

@1.1.12
Lmfao Seriously?? I didn't know that. xDDDD

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Brickedsoles2993d ago ShowReplies(2)
vhero2993d ago

A rebrand would be good for them as it would give them a second chance with the global market. Right now you hear Xbox and you think of a hardcore gamers console where you play games like Halo, GTA and gears not something like NATAL is trying to push out.

cyberwaffles2993d ago (Edited 2993d ago )

that's a good point vhero. basically they're trying to separate their markets into one being the hardcore gaming demographic (xbox) and the other being casual like the wii.

didn't think of it that way until you said it and its smart if thats the case since all the consoles have shown a hard time to appeal to other genres of games if its console were so dependent on particular one.

the 360 tends to have a hard time to attend to the JRPG and casual gamers, the wii has a really hard time selling hardcore games, and the ps3 is for the most part spread evenly amongst all genres but may not see as much as potent sales in just one game like halo or super mario.

jonlynch2993d ago

Might the smartest thing they could do considering they have the experience now and need a new "image".

UltraNova2992d ago

@Vhero I would also add to your well placed comments one more thing, maybe they are trying to escape form the Xbox RROD reminiscence that they rightfully got after all those failed consoles...

blue7xx72992d ago

Yeah I agree a rebrand would be smart move since a lot of people associate the Xbox name for the Hardcore gamer and some people associate it with Hardware failures(RROD) as well.

Don't get me wrong it has many amazing things to offer like games and Xbox live related stuff. But a rebrand would probably be best for them in the long run. Maybe it would even help them in Japan where the Xbox brand is non existent.

kevnb2992d ago

gears and halo is hardcore?

Anon73492992d ago

When I think "xbox," I think 8-14 year olds shouting racist slurs on xbox live, not "hardcore" in the slightness sense. Most 360 games started gaming THIS gen or the last gen with the original xbox.

When I think Korea, I think "hardcore" PC gamers with their CRT monitors and thousand dollar cash prizes where they sweat, breath and eat starcraft, their game of choice. Now that's hardcore gaming.

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FACTUAL evidence2993d ago ShowReplies(5)
acedoh2993d ago

is the best move they can make. They have constantly struggled trying to bring out more casual games and just seeing them fail. Even with a lower price 360 it still hasn't managed to compete with the Wii. The only move that makes sense is a new identity that the casual market can better identify with. Otherwise Microsoft will continue to just cater to a more hardcore audience.

MNicholas2992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

Sony stuck with the playstation brand not to "buck the trend" but because it was successful

Same reason Nintendo stuck with variations of "Nintendo" for their consoles until the market moved on.

Microsoft got a foot hold in the market by going after one segment of the market, the hardcore shooter fans, but that became the brand's downfall because being associated with such gamers also carries a stigma with the rest of the population.

Given how much cash Microsoft spent on developing the Xbox brand over the last 10 years, it has been a dismal failure.

If it's true that they're abandoning the brand, perhaps I'll hold my MSFT shares a little longer. I've been patient for years simply because of their enormous cash reserves but their management has been pathetic with one failed strategy after another. Perhaps this is the turnaround.

jphelps802992d ago

You can do something and it buck the trend. It doesn't have to be done with the intent of bucking the trend to actually do so.

Sometimes it's just sad to read comments. Now is one of those times.

MNicholas2992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

No company in gaming has ever cancelled a successful brand. They stuck with the Playstation name because it had been very successful.

MGS4 was called MGS4 because the Metal Gear Solid brand was successful.

Halo Reach has the name Halo in it because the Halo name is successful.

There are a billion games with the word Mario in it because Mario name has been very successful.

Sticking with a successful name is not just following the trend, it's the smart thing to do.

The 3-Ds of fanboy failure are:

1. Denial
2. Damage Control
3. Distraction

If the cancellation of the Xbox brand is true, then a lot of Xbox fanboys will be doing the 3-Ds over this. One of the common themes will be "Hey, in gaming, branding changes all the time. They're only doing it because it's the trend!"

Pathetic.

creatchee2992d ago

LMAO @ you deeming the XBOX brand a failure.

It has sold well and continues to sell well, has many high quality games available for it, and is well liked by its owners. If that is the definition of a failure, then just about every console that most normal and sane people would consider a success is really a failure. Because you said so.

As an aside, James Bond is one of the most successful franchises in movie history. I seem to remember the last two being called "Casino Royale" and "Quantum of Solace", not "James Bond and Casino Royale" and "James Bond and the Quantum of Solace".

Same goes with James Patterson's Alex Cross books. And a bunch of other titles in all mediums of entertainment. Bottom line is that while it may help to have a constant name in the titles for your franchise, it is not necessary.

I really do like the XBOX name though and it is very well known. I'm not sure why they would want to change it...

rkimoto2992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

I don't think Xbox as a console brand will dissapear, wouldn't make sense since it's only their 2nd generation in gaming,

bill021382992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

but she will buy a Wii.

By grandma i mean generally. Mine passed away a while ago.

jeseth2992d ago

I think it is really important for MS to keep the Xbox brand. People recognize with Xbox like they do Playstation or Nintendo.

If they change the name, they could find themselves fighting for the market share they have worked so hard to obtain. Especially if a company like Apple, or someone, also releases a console.

Then you would have the old standbys Sony Playstation and Nintendo on the market and a "new" MS product with potential other competitors.

Who knows if this is even true. But its interesting to think about.

Focker4202992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

Actually hes right. They wouldn't abandon the brand if it was successful. The truth is they still haven't turned a profit on the 360 brand, so why hold onto a sinking ship. Cut your losses and start over.

Yes you can say Sony is still in the hole but they still have time to come out positive as the PS3 brand is still growing. Plus Sony were in the exact same position with the PS1 & PS2 and eventually those were able to produce a profit. Sony has been in this position before, but they also had a brand that kept growing.

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gtamike2992d ago

The xbox name has a bad repudiation of RROD

MNicholas2992d ago

Most 360s failed in three years or less.

This also helped inflate sales numbers because a replacement by 3rd party warranties, such as those by Best Buy, are counted as retail sales.

BRG90002992d ago

It certainly has a bad reputation for faulty hardware on N4G and similar sites, but we are clearly not the demographic Microsoft is reaching for this year. I'm not convinced that non-gamers, casual gamers who might not have a PS2 but not a next-gen console, and Wii owners are actually aware of it.

food862992d ago

lol actually this is the first time i hear msoft being doomed in over 5 years, you must be mistaking it for sony

Ilikegames762992d ago

the tables are now turned. Seriously, I hope not, as the competition are what kept Sony, MS and Nintendo on their toes.

AAACE52992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

One things for sure... E3 should be very interesting this year! With all the rumors going around and a bunch of people claiming this is the best year of gaming. If half of the stuff we've heard is true, this could very well what they say!

On a side note, changing the name could help them out since so many people might still be concerned about hardware issues. The bad thing is, you know the true fanboys will never let that be forgotten!

CryWolf2992d ago (Edited 2992d ago )

it makes perfect sense xbox really wasn't a good name in the first place ever sense the original xbox came out, yea it have better graphics then PS2 but the Sony had a bigger fan base with original game titles like God Of War, Ratchet & Clank and Metal Gear Solid 2.

avengers19782992d ago

MS wants to make money and so far the xbox has only lost them money, it would not be surprising for the larger parent company to maybe do away with what is not profitable. That is not saying that they are going away from making games or consoles, or even that the xbox brand will die, but they may very well repackage the whole thing. Let's face it Xbox doesn't really do well world wide, and MS wants nothing more than to take over the Japan's gaming market.

SaberEdge2992d ago

I would bet anything that the Xbox brand is not going anywhere. This is a baseless rumor.

TROLL EATER2992d ago

perhaps a rebrand for the japanese market.

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GunShotEddy2993d ago

Does the really mean anything? It's about the product.

Funky Town_TX2992d ago

The name means a lot to most casual consumers.

koehler832993d ago

Microsoft Dolphin confirmed!

NexGen2992d ago

Lol, no Koehler...that was a Nintendo codename project. This will clearly be porpoise.

basicsameh5142993d ago

no, Microsoft will stay in gaming but the next console will have a entirely different name sorta like what nintendo douse

Nelson M2993d ago

For Microsoft to End the Xbox Brand is a Good Decision
Not Sure about this Project Natal though

ceedubya92992d ago

There have been some bumps along the way, yes. But we are now in the second generation of the brand, and only now are people really aware of it. Changing up could be risky. But, as long as they market it really well, public awareness probably won't be an issue.