In countries and territories other than the United States, Japan, Chile, Brazil and Colombia, Microsoft has announced that the price of Xbox Series X consoles will increase on 1 August. In addition, the price of Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscription programs will increase in most markets from 6 July. Since the service’s debut in 2017, Microsoft hasn’t changed the pricing of Xbox Game Pass until now.
According to Kari Perez, Microsoft’s games PR manager, the pricing changes are in line with the competitive landscape in each region. Since Microsoft’s console pricing has not changed in many years, this change is an attempt to bring it in line with current market trends.
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Different regions will see different price changes for the Xbox Series X. While most of Europe will see a price increase from €499.99 to €549.99, the UK will see a price increase from £449.99 to £479.99. In Canada, the price will increase from CAD $599.99 to CAD $649.99 and in Australia from AUD $749.99 to AUD $799.99. The Xbox Series S will remain at $299.99 in all regions.
Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will increase from $14.99 to $16.99 (€14.99 to £12.99) per month, and Xbox Game Pass for Console will increase from $9.99 to $10.99 (€10.99 to £8.99) per month. These price increases are for the games subscription services. There will be no increase in the cost of PC Game Pass. Existing Game Pass monthly subscribers will begin paying the higher prices on 13 August; customers with annual redemption codes will pay the new prices when their subscriptions are renewed. With the exception of a few countries, most markets will be affected by the Xbox Game Pass price change.
Microsoft has stressed that the Game Pass price change is simply a response to local market conditions and is not related to the recent acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The price increase is in line with the recent trend of entertainment subscription services, which includes platforms such as Netflix, Disney Plus, Apple Music, Hulu and Spotify. While Sony updated its PlayStation Plus subscription service last year, introducing three different packages for PlayStation users to choose from – PlayStation Plus Essential, Plus Extra, and Plus Premium – Nintendo has not changed the price of its Switch Online subscription service since its launch in 2018.