Microsoft recently announced that they’d be increasing the price of their beloved Xbox Live Gold service for the Xbox 360 to $60 a year as opposed to $50 a year as of November 2010. The Xbox Live Gold price hike has lots of Xbox fans crying foul, but is an additional $10 a year too much to ask?
Microsoft launched their Xbox Live service in November 2002 and has stayed at its current price of $50 despite undergoing a platform shift from the original Xbox to the Xbox 360, added features, and over 8 years of changes in the gaming industry. On Xbox Live’s 8th year anniversary, Microsoft plans to celebrate – by charging Xbox Live users an additional $10 for their 12 month Xbox Live Gold membership service.
I know that I’ll probably get flamed for this and that what I’m going to say is going to generate a wide range of hatred, but is $10 more a year for Xbox Live really that much to ask? Microsoft has done an excellent job with their Xbox Live service and has offered us [Xbox fans] free updates, added features and capabilities, and has totally transformed the face of Xbox Live over the last 8 years at no added cost to the Xbox Live community. Honestly, if you look at how far Xbox Live has come and compare the differences between Xbox Live in 2002 and the current state of the Xbox Live Gold membership, you’ll see that Microsoft would have been totally justified if they’d have raised the price of the Xbox Live Gold membership years ago.
8 years ago we were playing the original Xbox (with those big bulky controllers), video games cost $50 instead of $60+, and Xbox Live only allowed us to play games online and chat. Nowadays Xbox Live Gold allows us to browse social networking sites, purchase and download games and DLC content, stream movies over Netflix, update our Xbox 360 consoles and much much more.
If you think about it, what’s an additional $10 a year for the great service that Microsoft offers with its Xbox Live Gold membership? At Xbox Live’s current rate, Xbox Live Gold only cost a little more than $4 a month and with the $10 price hike, the cost of the service will only increase to $5 a month – heck, I play crappy MMORPGs that cost more than $5 a month.
Microsoft has been very reasonable with its Xbox Live Gold membership costs in the past and not only is a price hike justified by what Microsoft has done in the past, the additional $0.84 cents a month that Microsoft is asking for Xbox Live Gold will pave the way for greater things to come – Xbox Kinect, additional features, and the possibility of 3D gaming. I know that more money will just mean more money to some people, but after 8 years, you’d expect a raise as well.
For more, Cool Xbox 360 Features that Have Nothing to Do with Gaming , Can the New Xbox 360 Hardware Make Up for a Shaky 360 Past? , and The Five Best Types of Game to Play on the Xbox Kinect
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