It has been a very strange few days for Microsoft and Xbox fans. On Friday, Microsoft announced that for effectively no real reason, it was doubling the price of Xbox Live Gold from $60 a year to $120 a year. Immediately, this generated massive pushback from both players, who would bear those costs, and the press, who dubbed Xbox Live Gold suddenly “the worst deal in gaming.”
It took all of maybe 14 hours for Microsoft to come back and…kill the entire idea. Not only that, as in addition to reverting the planned price increase, they also announced that they were working on making all free-to-play games able to be played without needing Xbox Live Gold, a long-requested change, which would roll out over the next few months…
Microsoft is trying very hard to push people into signing up for Ultimate and Game Pass, and this price increase was meant to be a win-win for them. Either people were now close enough to the yearly price of Ultimate where they’d just do that instead, or they would be paying twice as much for Gold which meant more sub revenue anyways. What could go wrong? What is not clear, however, is why Microsoft did not anticipate the reaction….
Citing a Twitter thread from analyst Daniel Ahmad, the article concludes that “Microsoft knows that it is losing the console sales battle, and they will likely continue to lose it to Sony.
“So their main desire is to increase Game Pass adoption as much as possible to essentially be the definitive game subscription service in the market before others catch up.”
Read more of this story at Slashdot.