It appears that Microsoft is slowly phasing out its existing implementation of Xbox Live Gold, following the announcement that Microsoft’s Xbox One X (and One S All-Digital) consoles were discontinued in advance of the upcoming Xbox Series X.
The company informed True Achievements (opens in a new tab) that 12-month subscriptions are no longer available on its online shop. Instead, it offers 1-month and 3-month subscriptions. According to a Microsoft spokesperson, the company has removed the 12-month Xbox Live Gold SKU from its online store.
What are Microsoft’s plans for the next-gen?
Although no reason was given, this may indicate that Microsoft plans to overhaul its online services for the next generation. Microsoft will likely announce these plans closer to the launch Xbox SeriesX at year’s end.
What could Xbox’s online services look and feel like in the future? It’s possible that Microsoft could integrate Xbox Live Gold’s functionality with its Xbox Game Pass subscription. This would eliminate the need for two separate services. It is not clear if this would lead to a price increase.
Then there’s Microsoft’s new game streaming service, project xCloud. This has seen “hundreds and thousands” of beta-testers stream Xbox games from their PCs to their mobile devices according to Phil Spencer, Xbox boss.
It is possible that Microsoft has taken a long, hard look at Xbox Live Gold, its features, and decided it was too much for Xbox’s future. Although this speculation is only for now, Microsoft appears to have a lot more to announce in the coming year, given the many unknowns surrounding the launch of the Xbox Series X series.