After what seems like eternity, Microsoft seems to be in the process of getting the Xbox Elite Controller back in stores. This morning the Microsoft Store is showing Xbox Elite Controller stock for the first time in weeks.
Starting today, users can once again order the Xbox Elite Controller directly from Microsoft’s own retail store website. Announced at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in June, the Xbox Elite Controller is a professional-grade game pad for those who feel they need something that’s more customizable than what Microsoft includes in its basic bundles. The controller works on both Windows and Xbox One consoles, The joystick surfaces and directional pad are interchangeable. A switch in the center of the controller allows users to switch between custom profiles they’ve made for different games.
The Microsoft Store now shows that the Xbox Elite Controller is available for purchase immediately. Previously, the site forced users to leave their email address so that the company could contact them when more were available. Gamers or friends and family of gamers looking to purchase the controller as a holiday gift should hold off. Even though it’s in stock, the $149.99 Xbox accessory won’t actually begin shipping until December 28th, according to its updated store page.
Unfortunately, holding out until late December seems like the only plausible plan for gamers at this point. The Xbox Elite Controller has been very hard to find since it became available. Most stores reported that they were sold out within the first week of it being available. Whether that’s because Microsoft didn’t make enough to cover demand or didn’t expect a lot of fanfare is unclear.
There’s a switch on the Xbox Elite Controller that allows users to turn on Hair Triggers for faster response in first-person shooters. The entire controller is full of metal accents. A companion app allows users to adjust their controller’s sensitivity on the fly and create new profiles. A high-end carry case with slots for carrying the four removable paddles, charging cable and directional pad surfaces is included. Like the updated Xbox Wireless Controller, this controller has a built-in headset jack for connecting earbuds and headphones without an extra accessory.
Reviews on Microsoft’s website for the controller are pretty high. Most that have come in contact with the controller have great things to say. Gotta Be Mobile got some hands-on time with the controller following Microsoft’s summer announcement.
The Xbox Elite Controller is part of a renewed focused on accessories for Microsoft. Announced along with it were the Xbox ChatPad and Xbox Wireless Adapter. Each fills a niche that Microsoft previously ignored. The ChatPad allows users to type messages without using the on-screen keyboard or connecting their smartphone to their console. Early next year users will be able to reprogram two of the ChatPad’s buttons for specific features. The Xbox Wireless Adapter allows users to game on their Windows 10 PCs without a micro USB cable, which was required previously. Microsoft seems to have stepped up its efforts in PC gaming, where a less cluttered experience is a must. The Xbox ChatPad costs $34.99. The Xbox Wireless Adapter costs $24.99.
Microsoft sells the Xbox One Elite Wireless Controller with a slightly upgraded console too. This bundle is called the Xbox Elite Bundle and inside the special Xbox One is a 1TB hybrid drive that allows users to start the console faster if they aren’t using Always Connected Mode. The Microsoft Store shows that this bundle ships as early as November 25th. That means that shoppers would get it far earlier than they would the controller on its own.
Microsoft sells Xbox One bundles for as little as $349, with or without a Kinect sensor. All bundles besides the Elite Console Bundle includes at least one free game.