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on June 1, 2014
It turns out these NEW Microsoft USB Play and Charge Kit (black) when used with the Microsoft Wireless Elite (black) MUST be plugged into the Xbox 360 Elite aka Holiday Edition. Period.

You can NOT use external USB power adapters, NO multi-port USB chargers, NOT EVEN YOUR COMPUTER WILL WORK. All of the reviews/forums you see on the internet about this kit working with those types of non-Xbox360 USB charging devices are all talking about the OLD VERSION of this kit that used to work. It is NOT compatible anymore!

Before you disregard this review as someone who doesn't know what they're talking about, let me prove it to you: I tested with every combination of: FOUR (4) of the Play and Charge Kits, TWO (2) brands of Laptops MacBookPro and SonyVaioFlip, FOUR (4) brands of USB multiport wall outlet adapter chargers both with 500ma (0.5amp) all the way up to 2400ma (2.4amp) of 5volt USB output power. NONE of those worked... NOTHING makes the charging light turn on these, except the Xbox 360 elite! To be clear; All of this equipment is brand new from a post-Christmas 2013 holiday sale, and this annoying behavior is happening on ALL of them.

Issues for you to consider:

1. It's way too annoying to have to drag cables all the way across the room to the xbox360 and have these cables plugged into the console, we really wanted to just have the cables plugged into the wall outlet USB multiport chargers right next to our couch. NOPE, NO CAN DO.

2. We REALLY wanted to charge these wireless controllers at night in the USB wall adapter WHILE THE XBOX360 IS TURNED OFF - WHICH IS ALSO TOTALLY IMPOSSIBLE.

3. If the xbox360 goes to sleep - which it does constantly in an effort to save power - THE CHARGING LIGHTS ON THE CONTROLLERS ALSO GO OUT AND THEY STOP CHARGING.

UPDATE 1/25/2015:

In a very interesting twist of fate, I have increased my rating from 1-star to 3-stars, for the following reasons;

1. Even though the included Cable in this Kit has the drawbacks mentioned above, you can now buy this kit at a discount to the point that it might be worth getting it if the price is right - just for the official high-quality Microsoft battery that's included.

2. After over a year of constantly-using our Energizer xbox360 controller battery packs, 1 of 4 now won't hold a charge very long. So, we tried in vein for days to find a quality replacement from either Energizer or Microsoft to no avail.

3. I discovered that Microsoft and Energizer both seem to be starting to phase-out aka discontinue their high-quality longer-lasting Xbox360 wireless controller batteries for the Xbox One versions. I say this because the prices are going UP and they're getting harder and harder to FIND.

So, Don't Laugh, but yes... over a year after returning this kit, and being unable to find an Energizer replacement battery, we've re-purchased this kit on super-sale JUST for the quality official Microsoft battery pack - we got it cheaper than the battery used to be by itself!

Interestingly, we're charging this Microsoft battery in our official Xbox 360 controller with our Energizer Xbox 360 Front-Mounting Wireless Controller Charger Station. I DON'T KNOW IF THIS IS A BAD IDEA OR NOT. That said, so far in my situation, this Microsoft battery APPEARS to be charging okay I'm guessing because Energizer doesn't use the xbox360 controller's rear-cable but instead uses the xbox360 controller's front-mounting connector.

If you're curious, we've put the cable from this kit in our spare parts drawer for emergency use and don't ever use it.

The bottom line: Quality, long-lasting xbox 360 wireless controller batteries (like the one in this kit) seem to be getting more expensive and harder to find, so you might want to buy a spare if you plan on keeping your x360..........
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on April 25, 2016
Got this 2 years and a half ago by the time I write this review, the kit works as expected and just after 2 years I have to increase the frequency of the time I had to recharge back the batteries, but holds the charge still pretty well.

The cord is long and I'm able to play on my living room about 2 meters away from the tv, the cable will work on larger rooms.

The charge lasts to this time a little more than 25 hours, of curse this is totally approximate since depends on the games, those who use rumble a lot tend to reduce the charge faster than games that barely uses the rumble feature.

The quality is really good and well I know this will last for a couple more of years, when the time comes that the battery won't hold the charge, you still can use it with the cord plugged in.
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on October 9, 2016
After hours on destiny you kinda start running through batteries and your wallet starts to hurt a little. Thought I would give this a shot, because he whats spending 20 bucks on a one time battery VS 20 bucks every month! It's great! I can play while it charges, I can even plug it in at night and let it charge while I sleep and my xbox doesn't have to be on! There is only ONE complaint, it makes my turtle beaches buzz when I'm talking.. I have people complain to me about it.
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on August 5, 2015
So there I was, so exited to smash some faces FPS style. But alas my batteries kept dying while I was in epic unyielding combat. After spending hundreds of dollars on batteries to quench my undying thirst for pixelated blood I finally decided to go out and get a play and charge kit so I could afford to eat more then just ramen warmed up with tap water while on week long tweaked out gaming sprees in my Uncles basement. But just as it seemed that my addiction for animated gore-porn would be sated my new rechargeable batteries died... But its alright, right? Because you can just recharge them? Sure you can, then they die again after an even shorter period of time. I finally just gave up and attempted to strange myself with the charging cord, but it broke so that didn't work either.

In summation, the charging part of this apparatus works just fine. The rechargeable batteries provided with it however were not genuine XBOX goodies, but some knock off brand junk that has a half-life of about a week. After being charged 4-5 times they no longer hold a charge long enough to even turn on the box.
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on July 17, 2016
The charge kit I personally received doesn't in fact charge my controller's batter pack. I'm not sure if the cause of this is the charger itself, or the battery, all I know is that it hasn't ever charged for me. I have to A: either leave it always plugged in, or B: use standard AA batteries in place of the rechargeable battery pack. I may have just gotten a dud battery/charger. There is always a chance, when dealing with electronics, that you will receive one that just doesn't work, especially when the item in question is mass produced. Keep that in mind if you ever get a dud, whether it be a motherboard, TV, or something simple like a charge cord and rechargeable battery. That is not the fault of the seller, that is the fault of the manufacturer. Even the highest quality/priced stuff will occasionally be a dud. I give it three stars, because I can still use my controller as a wired controller, and as I sit at my computer the tower is right under the desk so this was no problem for me. If it had been able to charge my battery pack I would have given it five stars
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on January 8, 2015
Like other people have reported, the battery stopped taking a charge less than 6 months after buying it, with hardly any usage at all. Microsoft only gives a 90 day warranty so it just shows how much faith they have in this thing.

Basically $20 in the garbage.

EDIT: So still keeping the 1 star because it is designed terrible. The problem I was having is that when you plug it in, the charger shows the red light like it is charging, but only for a couple seconds, then goes green. The battery then lasts about 10 - 15 seconds before going dead.

I did some searching online and found a lot of people have this problem. There was a video on YouTube showing to short pins (http://youtu.be/QXaIlyjvvSE) to try and reset it. This didn't seem to work for me, but maybe it helped so I'll include it here.

I then saw elsewhere that people got it to charge by unplugging and replugging the USB cable in until it finally stayed red. This worked for me after about 15 - 20 tries. Now it is staying red and appears to be charging.
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on May 3, 2015
Really good investment. I use a battery operated wireless controller that came with my xbox. Replacing batteries is expensive and environmentally destructive, so then I bought a rechargeable battery and I also loved that. But it ended dying really quickly (wouldn't hold charge anymore) the more it was used. I know that's typical but suddenly I don't have a battery to use and the controller didn't initially come with a connector. This was an extremely helpful solution, did exactly what it's supposed to and is one of the best choices I ever made. Even when using my dead rechargeable battery (so I don't use the the new battery up too soon), the controller still works when plugged in. I don't sit very far from the xbox so I often use it went connected. The cord is longer than I had expected and I'm very happy about that (although that means if I just leave it out the cord out it ends up laying everywhere). It comes with another battery that also charges when playing but I wouldn't count on getting much juice when using and charging. It would be better to charge outside of playing. Regardless, I would recommend this to anyone. Even bought one for my sister who has a wireless controller that uses batteries. We both love it.
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I ordered this for my daughter's Xbox 360. It works perfectly. I did not want to have to constantly replace batteries in her controller and was getting annoyed with the frequency of battery replacement so I figured I would try this. It has more than paid for itself by saving us the need to buy batteries for her. We haven't had a single problem with it. It does the job and charges her controller and we don't have her banging on our bedroom door at 8 at night demanding batteries anymore.
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on August 7, 2008
This charging cable is a USB plugin for the front of your XBOX 360.

You CAN use it when the XBox is turned off, but you have to plug in the controller first, then hit the power. The XBOX 360 then goes into the low power mode and charges in that mode.

Start a download and then powerdown...

It works great if you are going to download some large demos anyway, set the controller to charge and let it power down sometime during the night when the controller is full.

You can also buy the battery packs themselves and use them with this cord. So I only bought 1 of these and then the battery by itself to save a few bucks.

My only concern with these is that the batteries get HOT while charging. Hot enough to warp the coffee table desktop I had it sitting on at the time. It happens with all 3 of my battery packs, so it must just be the charging system they use. I now rotate all my controllers upside down (face down) while they are charging and make sure they are on a spot that has good airflow (no charging next to the TV for example).
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on March 1, 2017
The Battery had corrosion after just a few weeks of use and completely failed. The charge and play cord works well for a USB connection but buyer beware, check the battery immediately upon receipt for any damage or corrosion near the seams of the plastic shroud.
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