Xbox Live no more: Microsoft is renaming the online service

Xbox Live no more: Microsoft is renaming the online service

Xbox Live no more

Xbox Live is history: With immediate effect, the service based on Xbox consoles and Windows PCs is running under the new name Xbox network. The new name is gradually being rolled out, and any problems with the changeover are currently being scrutinized with numerous beta testers as part of an initial update wave.

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The reason for the change: primarily of a cosmetic nature and should serve to guarantee a greater distinction between paying and non-paying users. If you have an Xbox Live subscription, you will probably continue to act as an Xbox Live Gold member. Those who do not reach for their wallet every month, however, will be on the road as users of the Xbox network in the foreseeable future. In an interview with The Verge, Microsoft commented on the move itself:

"'Xbox network' refers to the underlying Xbox online service that has been updated in the Microsoft Terms of Use. The update from 'Xbox Live' 'Xbox network' is intended to distinguish basic service from Xbox Live Gold memberships. "

Recommended editorial content At this point you will find external content from [PLATTFORM]. To protect your personal data, external integrations are only displayed if you confirm this by clicking on "Load all external content": Load all external content I consent to external content being displayed to me. This means that personal data is transmitted to third-party platforms. Read more about our privacy policy . External content More on this in our data protection declaration. Why such an emphasis is placed on this clear distinction is not discussed. The first rumors about the name change and other changes came in August of last year, when the terms of use for the service were updated. A price increase for Xbox Live Gold decided at the time was withdrawn after massive criticism.

A good change in the context of the name change: Free2Play games with online components will no longer require Xbox Live Gold as a basic requirement in the future. In order to play these, a subscription was necessary, unlike for example on Playstation 4 and 5 and Nintendo Switch, where Free2Play titles are exempt from the respective subscription services anyway.

Xbox has been since the very first Xbox Live an integral part of the console experience, so the name has been in use for a full 18 years. Initially intended primarily for the delicate first attempts at online multiplayer on consoles and a handful of download games, its scope continued to grow, and from the Xbox 360 times it was also chargeable. It has also been available on the PC for some time.

Source: The Verge

Xbox Live is no more: Microsoft rebrands it 'Xbox network'


Microsoft's strategy for its current generation of consoles, the Xbox Series X|S, differs from its approach in the past. Whereas selling consoles has hitherto involved securing exclusive games and content, Microsoft is this time taking a more service-based approach. Game Pass, a subscription service similar to Netflix, is the crown jewel of its offerings, and Microsoft hopes its xCloud, which allows you to play high-end games on your mobile phone, will be a boon.

So with a change of strategy comes with a change of branding. Xbox Live is no more, as Microsoft quietly rebranded its online service as 'Xbox network' over the weekend. 

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Xbox Live has been what Microsoft has called the console's online platform, which includes the ability to interact with friends, download games and more. Xbox Live Gold, a subscription service that allows you to play games online, will remain named as such.   

'Xbox network' refers to the underlying Xbox online service, which was updated in the Microsoft Services Agreement,' a Microsoft spokesperon said in a statement to CNET. 'The update from 'Xbox Live' to 'Xbox network' is intended to distinguish the underlying service from Xbox Live Gold memberships.' 

It may seem a small, cosmetic change, but it's one that's hit longtime Xbox gamers in the feels. Xbox Live has existed since 2002, launching on the original Xbox before being updated for each subsequent console. Others noted the name change is likely a portent for expanded online services.

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