According to a report from The Verge, Microsoft is preparing to raise the prices of the Xbox Series X and Game Pass.Kari Perez, the head of communications at Xbox, confirmed the price increases in a statement provided to The Verge.
Starting from August 1, Microsoft will raise the price of its high-end ninth-generation console, the Xbox Series X. The Verge highlights that this pricing adjustment will affect most countries, excluding the United States.
As a result, the cost of an Xbox Series X will be £479.99 in the UK, €549.99 across most European markets, CAD $649.99 in Canada, and AUD $799.99 in Australia. It should be noted that the price of the Xbox Series S will remain unchanged, with the 512GB model priced at $299.99 and the 1TB model priced at $349.99.
In all countries where the service is available, the price of Xbox Game Pass is set to rise. Starting from July 6, the cost of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will increase by $2 to $16.99 per month, while the regular Xbox Game Pass will see a $1 monthly increase to $10.99. However, the price of PC Game Pass will remain unchanged at $9.99 per month. It is worth noting that this marks the first time Microsoft has announced a price increase for Xbox Game Pass since its launch in 2017.
These announcements do not come as a complete surprise, as Xbox chief Phil Spencer mentioned back in October that the prices of Xbox hardware and Game Pass would eventually go up.
Microsoft handling Game Pass price increase amid FTC investigations
As Microsoft faces the FTC in court today regarding the potential acquisition of Activision Blizzard, it is an interesting development in light of recent news. The agency is seeking a preliminary injunction to halt Microsoft from finalizing the deal. The FTC filed a lawsuit against Microsoft last year, and an evidentiary hearing is scheduled separately from this month’s trial, which is set to take place on August 2.
Despite the ongoing legal proceedings related to the Activision Blizzard acquisition, Kari Perez, the head of communications at Xbox, clarified to The Verge that the price increase is unrelated to the deal. Microsoft maintains that the decision to raise the price is independent of its acquisition plans.
“Microsoft hasn’t changed its Xbox Game Pass pricing since launching the subscription in 2017, and the company is keen to stress this isn’t related to its proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard,” Perez told The Verge. “These Game Pass price adjustments are not related to the Activision Blizzard deal and are intended to match local market conditions.”