Microsoft is about to stop testing the new Xbox Game Pass Friend and Family plan that launched in limited preview back in September 2022. A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed to Eurogamer that the new plan will be discontinued on August 15 in all participating countries.
“We’re excited about how the Friends and Family plan has resonated with gamers and will be evaluating the learnings to help create an offer that we can bring to more players worldwide in the future,” the Microsoft spokesperson said. “All active members of the Friends and Family plan will receive an Xbox Game Pass offer as a thank-you for participating and a way to ensure they can continue to play the games they love after the preview ends.”
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The Xbox Game Pass Friend and Family Preview is currently available in Ireland, Colombia, New Zealand, Sweden, Israel, Chile, Hungary, and South Africa. For €21,99 per month in Ireland, testers could share their Xbox Game Pass Ultimate benefits with up to up to four friends and family members. Starting today, July 17, though, primary account holders can no longer add new members to their shared membership, Microsoft explained in an FAQ.
As of today, it’s not clear if this Xbox Game Pass Friends and Family is ever coming back. Earlier today, Microsoft announced that Xbox Live Gold will become Xbox Game Pass Core on September 14. The main change is that the monthly Games with Gold will be replaced by a catalog of over 25 Game Pass games. Pricing for this new Xbox Game Pass Core plan will remain the same at $9.99/month (or $59.99/year). In contrast, Microsoft just raised the price of Xbox Game Pass to $10.99/month, while Xbox Game Pass Ultimate is now $16.99/month.
Despite the price increase, Xbox Game Pass Ultimate remains one of the best deals in gaming, and the Friends and Family plan was also really good value. Microsoft announced that testers will receive Xbox Game Pass Ultimate codes as a gift for participating in the preview.