Microsoft is hiking the price of Xbox Series X and Xbox Game Pass

An image showing an Xbox Series X against a black background
Photo by Vjeran Pavic / The Verge

Microsoft is increasing its Xbox Series X prices in most countries in August apart from the US, Japan, Chile, Brazil, and Colombia. The Xbox maker is also increasing the monthly prices of its Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscriptions for the first time next month, which will see the base Game Pass subscription for console move up to $10.99 a month from $9.99.

“We’ve held on our prices for consoles for many years and have adjusted the prices to reflect the competitive conditions in each market,” says Kari Perez, head of communications for Xbox, in a statement to The Verge.

Xbox Series X console pricing will largely match the price hike Sony announced for the PS5 last year, with the Xbox Series X moving to £479.99 in the UK, €549.99 across most European markets, CAD $649.99 in Canada, and AUD $799.99 in Australia starting August 1st. The Xbox Series S pricing will not be adjusted in any markets, remaining at $299.99.

While Xbox Series X pricing adjustments had been expected after Sony’s move last year, Xbox chief Phil Spencer also hinted in October that pricing for subscriptions wouldn’t hold forever.

Image: Microsoft

Xbox Game Pass Ultimate and Game Pass for Console pricing will increase starting July 6th. Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will move from $14.99 per month to $16.99 (€14.99 / £12.99). The base Xbox Game Pass for Console pricing will also move from $9.99 a month up to $10.99 (€10.99 / £8.99). Microsoft is not changing PC Game Pass pricing, though.

If you’re an existing Game Pass monthly subscriber, then these new recurring prices won’t take effect until August 13th, or September 13th in Germany. New Xbox Game Pass members will see the new prices immediately on July 6th. If you’re subscribed to Xbox Game Pass through a yearly code, the new pricing won’t take effect until you go to renew your subscription.

Most markets will be affected by the Xbox Game Pass price increases, with the exception of some Game Pass console pricing which will remain the same in Norway, Chile, Denmark, Switzerland, and Saudi Arabia.

Microsoft hasn’t changed its Xbox Game Pass pricing since launching the subscription in 2017, and the company is keen to stress this isn’t related to its proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard. “These Game Pass price adjustments are not related to the Activision Blizzard deal, and are intended to match local market conditions,” says Perez.

Microsoft’s Xbox subscription changes follow a general trend in price hikes over the past couple of years for entertainment subscriptions. Netflix raised prices again last year following gradual price hikes in recent years, and Disney Plus and Hulu saw steep price hikes last year, too. Apple Music and Spotify have both increased in price in most markets in recent years.

Nintendo has not yet adjusted its Switch Online subscription service since launching it in 2018, and Sony only just updated its own PlayStation Plus subscriptions last year with new PlayStation Plus Essential, Plus Extra, and Plus Premium subscriptions for PlayStation owners.



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