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Microsoft is renaming Xbox Live to ‘Xbox network’

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Microsoft is renaming Xbox Live, its basic multiplayer and digital media distribution service, to ‘Xbox network’, a move it says will help distinguish it from Xbox Live Gold.

The name Xbox Live has been in use since the service debuted with the original Xbox in 2002. Tips for a name change originally appeared in August, after Microsoft updated its Services Agreement.

At the time, Microsoft said it was not renaming the service and had no plans to discontinue Xbox Live Gold. Instead, Microsoft announced an increase in the price of Xbox Live Gold that the company was forced to roll back quickly.

Now, however, with users noticing the removal of the Xbox Live nickname in Microsoft’s recent Xbox dashboard beta, the company has made the brand change to ‘Xbox network’ official.

Microsoft is renaming Xbox Live to Xbox network

Microsoft

“‘Xbox network’ refers to the underlying Xbox online service, which has been updated in the Microsoft Services Agreement,” a Microsoft spokesman told The Verge in a statement.

“The upgrade from ‘Xbox Live’ to ‘Xbox network’ aims to distinguish the underlying service from Xbox Live Gold subscriptions,” he continued. Xbox Live Gold made headlines earlier this year when Microsoft announced an increase in the price of the subscription service.

The move was heavily criticized, emerging amid a pandemic and a global financial crisis, and the decision was quickly reversed, with Microsoft also announcing that it would finally make free games playable on the Xbox without subscription.

Microsoft is planning to drop the subscription requirement for free games on its Xbox network in the coming months. How result , games like Fortnite will no longer require Xbox Live Gold, but Microsoft has yet to confirm exactly when paid access will be removed.

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