Xbox Live Gold subscribers are about to see a price increase, as Microsoft has announced a year’s membership will soon cost $69 in Canada.
[UPDATE: Microsoft has reversed their decision. “We always try to do our best for you and today we missed the mark,” read their statement on social media. “We hear you, and we’re reversing our Xbox Live Gold pricing updates.” Also, the company is now planning to remove Gold requirements for free-to-play games in the coming months, in order “to bring Xbox Live more in line with how we see the player at the center of their experience.” Original story follows.]
Microsoft announced the increase this morning, which equates to a $1 USD/month increase for monthly subscribers or $5 USD/month for those who pay for 3 months at a time. A year’s subscription will cost $59 USD at the new rate, which takes effect February 28th.
“Periodically, we assess the value and pricing of our services to reflect changes in regional marketplaces and to continue to invest in the Xbox community,” Microsoft said in their official statement. “In many markets, the price of Xbox Live Gold has not changed for years and in some markets, it hasn’t changed for over 10 years.”
Meanwhile the pricing for Xbox Live Ultimate will remain the same, an annual total of approximately $200 CDN at $16.99 per month—with the company offering a 3-month membership for $1 at the time of this writing. The Ultimate tier offers the same basic benefits as Gold but with the additional features of the Game Pass, like a rotating library of over 100 full titles, further marketplace discounts, complementary memberships to Game Pass for PC and EA Play.
The timing may come at an unfortunate time for many Xbox Live Gold subscribers, with economic tensions arising from the ongoing pandemic. By narrowing the gap between membership levels and making it harder to hold out on the Game Pass, this may be the first step toward phasing out the Gold level altogether.