On April 18, 2019, announced the launch of the Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, a then brand-new unit that featured both Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold. A user had to just subscribe to a single package to avail of both the services. The subscription package was tested by the tech team at Microsoft for sometime before making it accessible to the consumers on June 9, 2019.
Ever since its launch, the Microsoft Xbox Game Pass kept growing popular with time. Recently, in its financial results of the second quarter, Microsoft shared that the subscription package now has 18 million subscribers. In the last quarter, it had around 15 million subscribers. This has been a considerable jump, no doubt.
The subscription service offers a variety of packages, with the cheapest of them priced at $9.99. The kinds of services and facilities you get are similar to the kind offered by the likes of Google’s Stadia and NVIDIA’s GeForce. Game Pass comprises of more than a hundred games that can be downloaded by the users/subscribers and played on their console as long as their subscription is valid.
There is also an option to buy standalone games. Mostly, the service provides subscribers a discount when they buy any of the games on the platform. If you have bought a game, you can continue to play it even when your subscription expires. Games that have not been purchased cannot be played once the subscription period is over.
Microsoft has invested in a large number of game studios with the aim to expand its gaming library. Zenimax Media has been one of their most important acquisitions. Zenimax Media happens to be the parent company of Bethesda Softworks and has to its credit games like Fallout, Doom, and The Elder Scrolls.
While Microsoft has achieved tremendous success with the Xbox Game Pass, it is not the only business owned by the company that has registered extraordinary growth in recent times. The global tech giant has stated that it managed to earn a quarterly revenue amounting to $43.1 billion and a net income of $15.5 billion. While it recorded a 17 percent growth in its quarterly revenue, there was a 33 percent growth in the net income of the company.
Xbox consoles like the Xbox Series S and the Xbox Series X, which were introduced in the market in the last quarter, have turned out to be the most successful launches in the long-standing and glorious history of the company. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella asserted that the number of units the two devices sold in the month in which they were launched has been the highest sales figures Microsoft has registered for a new product to date.
According to an article published in The Verge, Amy Hood (CFO, Microsoft) has said that the company is hoping for the demand to be higher in the new quarter. The supply, he said, will be fairly controlled. Both the consoles have been listed as being ‘out of stock’ on the official website of Microsoft and the online stores of its partners.
Microsoft’s Surface business has also registered a 3% increase in revenue and is valued at $2 billion at the moment. With an increase in demand for PCs and laptops, its business is also expected to grow further. The number of subscribers of Office 365 have also increased by 28%. The number of consumer subscribers now stands at 47.5 million. Azure, the cloud business of Microsoft, recorded a 50% growth in revenue.