xbox one price slash
Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, announces backwards compatibility to play all Xbox 360 games on the Xbox One during game publisher Microsoft's Xbox media briefing before the opening day of the Electronic Entertainment Expo, or E3, in Los Angeles, June 15, 2015. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Microsoft has cut the price of Xbox One to $249 ahead of the August release of its highly anticipated Xbox One S. This is the third time since May that the Xbox One has seen a price slash — a drop of 50 percent since its launch almost three years ago.

Originally launched in November 2013 at an introductory price of $499, the Xbox One came with 500GB hard drive, Xbox One controller and Kinect sensor. A new retail configuration of the Xbox One was released in 2014 without the Kinect sensor, for $399.

Last year, Microsoft further reduced the cost of the stock model to $349 as it launched a 1TB edition of Xbox One for $399. However, in May 2016, it cut the price of the Xbox One to $299 and $319 for the 500GB and 1TB storage size variants, respectively. Following the announcement of Xbox One S at the Xbox E3 2016 briefing in June, Microsoft dropped the older model’s price to $279.

The latest price cut was announced by Lawrence Hryb, the Emmy Award-winning director of programming for the Microsoft gaming network Xbox Live, better known as Major Nelson on Twitter. The bundles on sale include games like "Gears of War: Ultimate Edition," "Quantum Break," "Forza Motorsport 6," "Rise of the Tomb Raider," and "Rare Replay."

While the offer stands for a “limited time,” there is no indication on when exactly that time frame will expire. According to the Verge, Microsoft has said the consoles will be available at $249 “while supplies last,” hinting at a clearing of inventory ahead of the Xbox One S release on Aug. 2.

The Xbox One S is touted as the most compact Xbox so far with dimensions that are 40 percent smaller than the original Xbox One. It also includes a built-in power supply. While the 2TB version is set to release for $399 in August, dates have not been announced for the $299 500GB and the $349 1TB versions.

Along with Xbox One S, Microsoft also announced the new Xbox Scorpio console at the E3 briefing last month. With Project Scorpio expected to be out in fall 2017, there is a likelihood of the bulkier Xbox One being discontinued.