Rumor: Xbox Live Gold Will Soon Be Free

Xbox Live Gold on Xbox One will soon be free, according to a new rumor. Recently, Microsoft ended Xbox Live Gold's yearly subscription option. And at the moment of publishing, it hasn't provided any explanation for why it has done this, suggesting there's something afoot involving Xbox Live Gold. On the back of this, prominent Xbox insider Klobrille has teased that it's not a matter of if, but when the paywall for Xbox Live Gold comes down.

Unfortunately, this is all the insider divulges. However, there's a chance we will hear more about this at Xbox's upcoming event this Thursday, though Microsoft did say last week the event would focus only on Xbox Series X and Xbox One games.

If the current paywall for Xbox Live Gold -- $60 for a year's worth of subscription -- comes down, it will be interesting to see if Microsoft attempts to subsidize this considerable revenue loss by driving Xbox users to its other products, such as Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.

Right now, Microsoft offers both Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. The two offers are largely identical in every regard beyond the fact that the latter comes bundled with Xbox Live Gold. For this -- and a few other smaller features -- Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers pay an extra $5 a month compared to vanilla Xbox Game Pass subscribers.

If the paywall of Xbox Live Gold comes down that also effectively removes the only difference between Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Game Ultimate. In other words, if Microsoft makes Xbox Live Gold free, it would have to provide Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers with something else to justify the increased price. Unless of course, Microsoft is planning to bury Xbox Live Gold behind Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, but I can't imagine this happening. Forcing your average Xbox user to pay an extra $10 a month and subscribe to Xbox Game Pass just to utilize Xbox Live Gold would not go down well.

That said, for now, everything here should be taken with a grain of salt. Nothing here is official. And at the moment, Microsoft has not commented on the claim, which has been floated around by a few other sources as well.

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