Microsoft is going to be rebranding its online service, Xbox Live, to a new name, shifting to a more general “Xbox network.” Microsoft confirmed this name change in a statement to The Verge.
“’Xbox network’ refers to the underlying Xbox online service, which was updated in the Microsoft Services Agreement,” stated a Microsoft spokesperson. “The update from ‘Xbox Live’ to ‘Xbox network’ is intended to distinguish the underlying service from Xbox Live Gold memberships.”
This name change started happening recently as some players noted that their Xbox dashboards no longer referred to the online service as “Xbox Live” but rather “Xbox network.” When uploading or looking through captured images and footage, the dashboard clearly uses the new name.
Dashboard no longer refers to it as Xbox Live pic.twitter.com/nVf0BQ9ABl
— Adam ‘EvilBoris’ Fairclough (@EvilBoris) March 20, 2021
Last August, Microsoft said that there were no changes coming to the Xbox Live Gold subscription tiers, even though the company had taken them down, speculating a pivot that free-to-play games would no longer require a Gold subscription. At that time, Microsoft also clarified that there would be no name change. It seems like that’s not the case anymore.
Additionally, this year, Microsoft briefly planned to implement a pricing hike for Xbox Live Gold, effectively doubling its current price of $60 for 12 months to only offering 6 months for $60. However, this decision was met with swift backlash from the community and was subsequently reversed.