Microsoft has done some light rebranding of Xbox Live.
Microsoft has officially confirmed that Xbox Live, the network in use by Xbox consoles and Windows 10, will be known as Xbox network (yes, with a lowercase 'N') going forward.
The platform holder told The Verge that it's doing this in order to "distinguish the underlying service from Xbox Live Gold memberships." This follows Xbox users noticing the new Xbox network branding on their console's dashboard.
Dashboard no longer refers to it as Xbox Live pic.twitter.com/nVf0BQ9ABl
— Adam ‘EvilBoris’ Fairclough (@EvilBoris) March 20, 2021
Microsoft updated its services agreement last August to refer to Xbox Live simply as 'Xbox online service’, a move that some took to mean the company was getting ready to drop Xbox Live Gold and re-anchor its online offerings around Game Pass. Microsoft denied that at the time, and later went on to raise Gold prices in January.
It didn't take long for the overwhelmingly negative reaction to rise, forcing Microsoft to reverse course and announce that free-to-play games will soon no longer require a Gold subscription. This change is intended to arrive this year, though Microsoft hasn't revealed any details on that since.