Craig Davison, senior marketing director for Xbox Live, has said the price increase for Gold Membership all boils down to content.
Speaking with Gamasutra, Davison said raising the price from $4.17 per month to $5 well help keep the quality of offerings consistent while allowing the firm to add more options to members.
“If I’m playing Halo: Reach, Gears of War, Call of Duty, the consistency of the service and the experience needs to be there regardless of what that entertainment application is,” he said. “As you can imagine, the costs associated with maintaining a service at that level and making sure all of those features are consistent, we’re hitting that quality bar, we’re adding the customer service infrastructure necessary, we’re accommodating all of the same social features and functionality too, there’s a cost.
“Infrastructure costs, of course. And we’re continuing to bring more and more content. And we want to add more and more and more. ESPN is a great example. No extra charge for Xbox Live Gold members. But we want to continue to bring that content in. We also want to continue to innovate on all dimensions, whether it’s social, entertainment, or gaming.
“So there you go.”
Microsoft launched XBL in 2002, and went from 400K members in its first year to 25 million as of today.
Announced back in August, the price of a Gold Membership with Xbox Live was raised from $49.99 a year to $59.99, yesterday.