Microsoft lowering the price of Xbox Series X storage is good, but not enough
Microsoft has recently announced that the Seagate Storage Expansion Card for Xbox Series X will now be cheaper than it was close to three years ago.
For as great as the Seagate Xbox Storage Expansion Cards are, they remained an incredibly expensive way of giving your Xbox Series X the space it needs. Thankfully, as of just a few days ago, there's been a serious price cut to the proprietary hardware. You can now get the 1TB and 2TB capacity options for $150 and $280 a piece, which takes a fair amount of sting out, but it's still far from ideal.
The original MSRP of $219.99 / £254.99 / AU$349 for the 1TB model at launch was seriously steep, especially considering how you could spend half of that on some of the best SSDs for PS5 on the rival console. Matters weren't helped by the 512GB and 2TB variants, which followed in 2021, at $109.00 / £179.99 and $359.99 / £534.99 / AU$749.95 respectively.
Think of all the new games you’ll be able to download and play now 👀The @Seagate Storage Expansion Card is now available starting at a lower price: https://t.co/qjgbTRuMeB pic.twitter.com/RovCaXADmdMay 5, 2023
This news isn't entirely surprising. The Seagate Storage Expansion Cards have a history of selling at discounted prices, but now with the official rates lowering significantly, the doors are wide open for further improvement. It's worth remembering that Seagate is now no longer the only game in town when it comes to Xbox Series X storage expansion, though, making this move a step in the right direction.
That's because the WD Black C50 was announced back in April with prices that significantly undercut Seagate's official offering. While availability hasn't been rolled out yet, a recent Best Buy listing shows that the 1TB WD Black C50 will retail for $149.99, which is still a full $30 cheaper than the reduced price that Microsoft is celebrating over.
In that reveal, I argued that despite the cheaper price it was still too expensive for what it is. That's because Gen 4 NVMe SSDs aren't the fastest anymore with the advent of Gen 5 models now hitting the market and leaving them in the dust. Both the Xbox Series X and PS5 utilize this storage type and have been available since 2019. In the four years since it's gone from ridiculously overpriced to a mere fraction of those original listing prices. That's been apparent with the likes of the WD Black SN850, Samsung 980 Pro, and the Kingston Fury Renegade just to name a few.
In contrast, the decision to use a specified chassis on Xbox has meant that players are paying way over the odds at a time when Gen 4 models should be cheaper. The fact that rates have decreased has given the impression that Western Digital will follow suit, and hopefully, in a few months, we'll be looking at 1TB Xbox Storage Expansion options around the $100 / £100 / AU$186 price range. That will be something to celebrate. Until then, this is good enough for now, but Xbox gamers deserve better.