Recently Browsing 0 members
No registered users viewing this page.
By Usama Jawad96
Microsoft backpedals on Xbox Live Gold pricing, free-to-play games won't require subscription
by Usama Jawad
A few hours ago, Microsoft received massive backlash for increasing the price of its Xbox Live Gold program for new customers. It announced that the price of a one-month subscription is increasing by $1 to $10.99, and price of a three-month membership is increasing by $5 to $29.99, and a six-month membership is now $59.99 - which was previously the cost of its annual membership.
Following feedback from users of the service, Microsoft has now backpedaled on the decision.
In a statement on the original blog post, the firm has announced that it will not be implementing the new price model, and that the price of Xbox Live Gold membership will remain the same. It stated that:
A notable change coming to the program is that you will not require a subscription to play free-to-play games like Fortnite or Call of Duty: Warzone. This will make the service more in line with Sony's competing PlayStation Plus program. However, this modification to the program is not immediately available and Microsoft will be working to deliver it "in the coming months".
When Microsoft announced the new pricing model a few hours ago, many believed that it was designed to push gamers to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which is arguably a better value proposition, but at $14.99/month. However, the price hike was considered to be in bad optics considering that the company is not adding any new features to the service, and free-to-play games still require a premium membership unlike Sony's PlayStation Plus. With the subscription model now reverted to the original and now packing a major improvement, it remains to be seen how the firm will entice users to join the Game Pass Ultimate program.
Cyberpunk 2077 gets its first major patch, brings stability improvements and bug fixes
by Anmol Mehrotra
CD Projekt Red (CDPR) has released the first major patch for Cyberpunk 2077. The new update brings the version to 1.1 and fixes a lot of issues. In a tweet, CDPR noted that this update “lays the groundwork” for future patches. Here is the full changelog for the update:
Apart from these, CDPR is also rolling out the following PC-specific changes including a fix for startup crashes on Nvidia GPUs. Here is the full changelog for the update:
Lastly, the update also brings fixes for PlayStation, Stadia, and Xbox specific issues. You can check the changelog for those below:
The new update is rolling out to PCs, PlayStation, Stadia, and Xbox users right now. Last week, CDPR shared the roadmap for Cyberpunk 2077 that included the details of the upcoming patches as well as a free DLC and a free upgrade for next-gen consoles.
The YouTube app for Xbox now supports HDR videos
by João Carrasqueira
In the summer of 2016, Microsoft introduced the Xbox One S, bringing support for HDR to the Xbox family for the first time. Now, after four and a half years, Google has implemented HDR video support into the YouTube app on Xbox consoles, as reported by FlatpanelsHD (via Windows Central).
HDR has become a fairly standard feature in modern TVs and every iteration of the Xbox since 2016 has supported it. YouTube itself also added support for HDR videos later that year, so it's certainly interesting that it took this long for those two things to come together.
It's not completely clear when the capability was added to the YouTube app, but FlatpanelsHD points out that it wasn't available on the Xbox Series X back in December. The report confirms HDR is working on both the Series X and the One S, and there's no reason why it wouldn't also work with the One X and Series S.
You'll need to make sure you have the latest version of the app for HDR to work, or you can download the app from here if you haven't yet. While HDR support in the YouTube app is good news, it doesn't look like it's working as well as some might hope just yet. The app only supports HDR in videos using Google's VP9, instead of adopting the more modern AV1 format, which has also been backed by Google. Hopefully, a future update will address that issue.
By Rich Woods
Microsoft is doubling the price of Xbox Live Gold
by Rich Woods
Today, Microsoft announced that it's increasing the price of Xbox Live Gold in a big way. The price of a one-month subscription is increasing by $1 to $10.99, and price of a three-month membership is increasing by $5 to $29.99, and a six-month membership is now $59.99.
Indeed, $59.99 is the same price that a year of the service used to cost, and for now, you can still get that on Amazon and at other retailers. You'll want to jump on that now though. You can also keep renewing your existing subscription for the same price as before if you have a six-month or annual subscription already.
Naturally, Microsoft wants gamers to switch to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which was originally meant to combine Xbox Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold, and has since added Xbox game streaming and Xbox Game Pass for PC to the value proposition. The company is still offering a deal where it will convert your Xbox Live Gold to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for no charge, up to three years. That means that if you have a year left on your Xbox Live Gold subscription, you can turn that into a year of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (yes, that even works if you buy that one-year subscription linked to above right now).
Microsoft says that in many markets, the price of Xbox Live Gold hasn't changed in years, and in some, over a decade. Indeed, in the United States, the service has been $59.99 a year for quite some time. Many have speculated that Xbox Live Gold might go away at some point in favor of Game Pass, and this price hike might be another step toward that.
Editor's note: We've added a note indicating that it's still possible to renew existing six-month or 12-month subscriptions at the previous price. We apologize for this oversight.
UPDATE: Microsoft has backpedaled on the decision to hike the Gold price.
By Rich Woods
Xbox Games with Gold for February include Gears 5 and more
by Rich Woods
Today, Microsoft announced the Games with Gold that Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers will be able to claim for free during the month of February. Typically, this includes two Xbox One games and two Xbox 360 games that are playable via the Backward Compatibility program. This month, however, there are five free games, one of which is optimized for Xbox Series X|S, and that game is a big title: Gears 5.
Here's the full list:
Gears 5 (Xbox One, Optimized for Xbox Series X|S, February 1 -28)
Resident Evil (Xbox One, February 1 - 28)
Dandara: Trials of Fear Edition (Xbox One, February 16 - March 15)
Indiana Jones and the Emperor's Tomb (Xbox, February 1 - 15)
Lost Planet 2 (Xbox 360, February 16 - 28)
As usual, it's also not too late to claim some of this month's Games with Gold. You can still claim Little Nightmares (Xbox One) and Breakdown (Xbox) until the end of the month, and Dead Rising (Xbox One) until February 15.