Microsoft is closing the Xbox 360 Store in 2024: here is what that means
Microsoft plans to shut down the Xbox 360 Store on July 29, 2024 according to an announcement on the company's official Xbox website. Games and DLC continue to be available, if already purchased. Purchased media content, however, can't be watched anymore on the Xbox 360 console after the shutdown date.
Microsoft launched the Xbox 360 console in 2005 as the successor of its debut console Xbox, which launched in 2001.
Starting July 29, 2024, "new games, DLC, and other entertainment content" can't be purchased anymore according to Microsoft's announcement. The change has no affect on games or DLC that Xbox owners purchased up to the day of shutdown; these are not affected by the shutdown and will continue to play.
Thanks to the backwards compatibility of Microsoft's current generation consoles, the Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S, gamers may also play content purchased previously on these systems, if they do own them and connect them to the same account.
A list of backwards compatible games is available on Microsoft's website. The alphabetical listing lacks search functionality, but it is possible to change the default number of entries per page from the default 50 to 500. Using on-page find, Ctrl-F, may then help find titles quickly and without having to go through a dozen or so pages.
Many of the games for the Xbox 360 can still be purchased on the Xbox stores that remain available, e.g., the Xbox One store. Microsoft notes that Xbox 360 games look and work better on its newer consoles thanks to features such as "FPS Boost, Auto HDR, and faster loading times".
The shutdown affects another feature of the Xbox 360 console. The Microsoft Movies & TV app will no longer work after July 29, 2024. In other words: Xbox 360 users can't use the app after the date to watch TV and movie content, even purchased content.
Content purchased in the Microsoft Movies & TV app remains available on still supported Xbox systems as well as on Windows 10 and later systems. All purchased content may also be streamed and downloaded on the Movies Anywhere app or site, according to the Xbox 360 shutdown FAQ.
Xbox 360 owners may continue to purchase games and DLC from the Xbox 360 Store and the Xbox 360 Marketplace until July 29, 2024 according to Microsoft.
Not all Xbox 360 games are playable on newer Microsoft consoles at the time. You can check out the list of Xbox 360 games that are not playable on Microsoft's newer Xbox systems here.
Games and DLC remain available after the shutdown of the Xbox 360 Store, at least if they have been bought prior to the shutdown. The same can't be said for TV and movie content, as it can't be watched on the Xbox 360 console anymore after the shutdown date. While most Xbox 360 owners may have access to a Windows PC, web browser or newer Xbox console, it may still impact others.
The shift from using cartridges and discs to digital content is still ongoing. More and more gamers purchase digital content, which has advantages, but also disadvantages. One of the main disadvantages is that companies may take away the content by shutting down stores or services.
Google's recent closing of its Stadia game streaming service is another example of digital goods being take away from buyers. Google did offer refunds though.
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