A Brief History of Game Consoles, as Seen in Old TV Ads

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2004-2005: SSD Company XavixXport, Microsoft Xbox 360

Following several years of shared dominance among the PS2, Xbox, and GameCube, the big three of Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo began gearing up for their next round of innovations. Meanwhile, an underpublicized console from SSD Company did some innovating of its own.

2004: SSD Company XaviXport

Two years before the Nintendo Wii's bundled sports title had gamers bumping into furniture and playing Van Gogh tennis, the XaviXport console used sensors and game-specific controllers (shaped like such implements as golf clubs and fishing rods) for a variety of games including golf, bass fishing, bowling, tennis, and boxing.

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2005: Microsoft Xbox 360

Microsoft had slowly gained traction with its original Xbox, and its more-attractive successor reached stores a full year before either Sony's or Nintendo's counterthrust. The Xbox 360 features a 3.2-GHz Xenon CPU (with triple IBM PowerPC-based cores) and a custom ATI graphics chip; both of which share the system's 512MB of RAM.

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At launch, the Xbox 360 was available in two configurations. The complete Xbox 360 package ($400) included a detachable 20GB hard disk, a wireless controller, a media remote, an Xbox Live online gaming headset, and component video cables (for 720p high definition). The Core System ($300) came with a wired controller and composite video cables.

The Xbox 360 possesses Media Center-geared abilities and accessories such as an HD DVD-ROM add-on (for playing high-definition DVD movies), a wireless networking adapter, a wireless steering wheel, and a wireless Webcam.

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