UPDATE: Due to backlash, Microsoft has reversed the price increase. Furthermore, free-to-play games no longer require Xbox Live Gold for multiplayer.
Today was not great. We always try to do our best for you and today we missed the mark.
We hear you, and we’re reversing our Xbox Live Gold pricing updates.
— Xbox (@Xbox) January 23, 2021
Original Story below:
Bad news: The subscription cost for Xbox Live Gold is going up. The good news: it’s only going up by $1 a month. The interesting news: this makes Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which includes Live Gold, an even better deal.
The new prices for Xbox Live Gold are as follows:
- 1 month – $10.99
- 3 months – $29.99
- 6 months – $59.99
An email will be sent out to all subscribers within the next month. The new price will go into effect 45 days after the notice is sent out. The price increase will not be applied retroactively, if you already have a 6 or 12 month subscription plan. The next time you renew after the new prices are in effect, the new price will apply.
Price hikes for subscription services aren’t uncommon, and $1 is about inline with other services like Netflix. But Microsoft has one goal in mind: getting every Xbox player subscribed to Xbox Game Pass. The Ultimate version of Game Pass includes Xbox Live, granting multiplayer support for all Xbox and Windows games.
Xbox Live Gold subscribers can upgrade their membership to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, directly converting their subscription plan, which sounds like a solid deal.
For $14.99 a month, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate includes over 100 games for Windows PC and Xbox consoles, as well as member discounts and other perks. Starting sometime later this year, it will also include the EA library of games via EA Play. Xbox Game Pass membership also comes in separate $9.99 subscriptions for just PC or just consoles, without the multiplayer features of Xbox Live Gold.