Novelty products born out of memes – as opposed to careful, studied design sketches and in-house meetings – are now far too common and are almost invariably not worth the investment. Microsoft is hoping their latest creation doesn’t fall into that crude trap as they prepare to open pre-orders for their off-kilter Xbox Mini Fridge (official name: Xbox Series X Replica Mini Fridge Thermoelectric Cooler), set to ship to multiple global regions by the end of this year.
The idea for the Xbox Series X Mini Fridge came from good old fashioned online mockery. After the initial reveal of the Xbox Series X design, the internet scrambled to find flaws, comparing the upright look of the towering console to a futuristic refrigerator – an ongoing joke Microsoft leaned into hard by spawning this fascinating piece of kit.
Xbox incorporated the joke into their marketing strategy, trying to muscle out the PS5 by sending high-profile Xbox fans like Snoop Dogg a supersized version of the Xbox Series X Fridge.
Snoop Dogg has an Xbox Series X fridge pic.twitter.com/7SUCJYdk36— Wario64 (@Wario64) October 24, 2020
After Xbox beat Skittles in a nonsensical Twitter poll for “best brand”, Microsoft decided to reward the internet by making the Xbox fridge meme a reality for all the non-celebs out there, shrinking things down to a more reasonable size. Now Microsoft can add a two-shelf fridge to its healthy stock of Xbox paraphernalia.
Aside from looking like an Xbox Series X but functioning as a fridge, there isn’t much that distinguishes the Xbox Mini Fridge from any other mini-fridge you’d have conveniently sitting next to the couch. It’s got enough storage space for 10-12 cans, and the only unique thing about it is that the body features its own functioning USB charging port so you can juice up your smartphone, get on the beers, and play Halo without having to leave the throne.
Microsoft hooked up with product development company Ukonic to mass-produce the Xbox Series X Mini Fridge, which they’ve slapped with a retail price of US$99.99 (~AU$134.59). Xbox has confirmed that the Xbox Mini Fridge will be available for countries beyond just the US, contrary to initial expectations, but Australia has not yet been mentioned when it comes to shipping regions. Although the company has also stated that they are hoping to expand regional availability in 2022, so if Aussies miss out on getting their hands on an Xbox Series X Mini Fridge this year, it seems that they’ll only have to wait a few extra months.
Although if you don’t have the patience to wait for the Xbox Series X Fridge to come to Australia, you could dial in a mate that lives in either the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Spain, Netherlands, or Poland. Pre-orders will open in those countries from October 19 and can be made at the local Game Stop, Game, or – in the US – Target.