Xbox Game Pass ‘Family Plan’ FAQ: Here’s how much money you’ll save by sharing

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Xbox Game Pass for Families is now official, confirming our report of the feature due earlier in 2022. Plus, it’s a lot cheaper than you might think.

We previously reported that Microsoft was moving forward with plans to add a new tier to Xbox Game Pass for Families, which, like Office 365, would give you four additional users on a single Xbox Game Pass subscription. Today, Microsoft confirmed those plans, with a limited test for Xbox Insiders in Ireland and Colombia.

I suspect the purpose of these tests is to determine user behavior and the economic viability of the project. During this period, we expect Microsoft to examine how features can change the habits of subscribing to the service or sharing Xbox Game Pass with friends and family. Netflix has grown rapidly with its fairly liberal policies on account sharing, although it has begun to curtail some of those freedoms amid growing competition.

Microsoft is still in a growth phase with Xbox Game Pass as it increasingly explores ways to attach new users to the service. Xbox Game Pass for Families, or a “family plan” as it’s called, has long been requested by Xbox users. While you can share Xbox Game Pass with another account through “game sharing,” families with multiple kids should stack multiple subscriptions right now. This new plan will allow families or groups of friends to secure access to multiplayer games and other titles coming to the service, while potentially increasing the amount Microsoft and its developer partners can earn through DLCs and purchases. in the game.

How much will be The cost of the Xbox Game Pass family plan, anyway? Well, it’s potentially cheaper than you think.

So how much does it cost?

Xbox Game Pass panel

(Image credit: Matt Brown | Windows Central)

The cost of an Xbox Game Pass Family Plan is 21.99 euros per month during ongoing testing across Ireland. Our report released earlier this year also indicated that tentative US price is around $24.99, which puts it roughly in line with the EU market test. This gives you a total of five users on one plan, in the same country.

Right now, the Xbox Game Pass Family Plan is powered by Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, which costs $14.99 for a single license. If you split the cost between the five licenses, you essentially get Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for $5 per month instead of $15 per month.. That essentially makes it the cheapest way to get an Xbox Game Pass Ultimate deal, if that ends up being the final price.

As this is only a test phase at the moment, the final price may change.. The reason Microsoft is piloting this in two markets is to see how the plan affects user behavior. The goal here is most likely to increase the number of active users in the subscription, while further promoting the platform through virality. The more people attached to Xbox Game Pass by any means necessary, the larger the footprint of the subscription service in general.

You can think of it in terms similar to how Netflix has been so reluctant to stop people from sharing their passwords between households. Password sharing for the subscription service has undoubtedly helped inflate and self-perpetuate its market share and user base. But given that Netflix is ​​now looking to prevent certain users from sharing passwords outside of a household, it certainly seems like there’s an upper limit to how useful this continues.

Microsoft may determine that the current price target is too low for Xbox Game Pass to be economically viable, given the costs of content licensing and powering features such as Xbox Cloud Gaming. We’ll have to wait and see how it all pans out for the final price.

What is included in the package?

The The Xbox Game Pass “family plan” gives you four additional licenses to attach to your main account license, giving you a total of five users with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. It works very similarly to Office 365, which lets you share Office plans with up to four family members in the same country in addition to your personal subscription, attached to your Microsoft account.

With the Xbox Game Pass Family Plan powered by Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, you get the following:

  • The Xbox Game Pass Family plan gives your main account and four additional accounts full access to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. Although, with Xbox Game Sharing, technically you can also attach a sixth user using the Xbox Game Sharing loophole.
  • If you are already an Xbox Game Pass subscriber, your remaining subscription will be converted to a new Xbox Game Pass family plan. This is not a 1:1 conversion, accounting for differences in value between subscriptions. However, the remaining subscription time of all connected users Won’t do convert. All users need a Microsoft account.
  • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate offers hundreds of downloadable games to play on Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S consoles, in addition to PC. Check out our full list of Xbox Game Pass games for more info.
  • You also get access to Xbox Cloud Gaming, allowing you to stream and play a large library of Xbox games on any Android device, any iOS device via the web, and any PC. Many of these games also include touch controls, allowing you to play from anywhere. Check out our roundup of the best Xbox Cloud Gaming games for more.
  • You also get a ton of Xbox Game Pass perks, which include trials for things like Discord, a streaming service like Paramount+, and even skins for games.
  • You also have access to exclusive discounts to buy games to own if you or the games plan to leave the Xbox Game Pass service.

Does everyone have to live at the same address?

Microsoft said family plan members don’t need to be in the same household; only in the same country. However, it is not clear if this is just a restriction for this test, or if it will also be transferred to the public version.

It’s possible there are country restrictions down the line, but we won’t know for sure until Microsoft clarifies. It seems odd to restrict access by country, given the cloud nature of Xbox Game Pass offerings.

Add family members to your Microsoft account

It’s pretty easy to add family members to your Microsoft account, which you can do before the general rollout of this plan.

Unless you’re part of the Xbox Game Pass Ireland and Columbia Insider test, you can use the family section of Microsoft’s website to manage various family safety features for young people, including screen time permissions, age restrictions on content and even setup. unsavory website blockers on Microsoft Edge.

  1. Head to your Microsoft Account page (opens in a new tab) on the web and log in.
  2. Scroll down to find your family sectionor go to this link to manage it directly. (opens in a new tab)
  3. From here you can add family membersas well as setting up screen time and permissions for young people who are attached to your account.

Does it work with Xbox Console Sharing?

A little-known flaw in the Xbox licensing model already allows you to share your games and licenses with a secondary user, leading people to wonder if this dual right would work for secondary users attached to your account.

Perhaps a little obviously, Microsoft has confirmed that secondary users attached to your Xbox Game Pass family plan Won’t do be allowed to share access to their Xbox Game Pass access beyond their own account. This is to avoid a daisy chain effect where users could simply share and re-share access to Xbox Game Pass, undermining the economic viability of the service.

However, you will still be able to share your primary account’s Xbox Game Pass access using the dual entitlement system, where you sign in to a second Xbox using your cloud connection, while keeping another Xbox as permanent “home” connection. In effect, this essentially gives you an additional license to share with a friend, making total access possible for 6 users.

Some have also asked me if the Xbox Game Pass family plan will allow game library sharing for non-Game Pass titles with other family members. This is not intended to be the case, it is only for Xbox Game Pass titles, although game sharing will work normally between two users.


Xbox Game Pass Family Plan Offers Unbeatable Value

Banner Xbox Game Pass May 2022

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Xbox Game Pass was already hailed as the best gaming deal, but this new family plan really extends that promise. If it Is Shipping at $25, according to the test, for consumers in increasingly difficult financial circumstances, Xbox Game Pass will be a real boon for families of gamers everywhere. There’s every chance that Microsoft will decide to raise the price down the line, or even before launch, but for now, I think it’s okay to hold out hope that it will hit $25 initially.

For groups of friends at different income levels or larger families who all want to play games, this service offers access to premium titles on a scale never seen before in history. I have sad memories of being kicked out of Nintendo games as a kid due to high prices, when many of my friends were discussing the same titles at school. Xbox Game Pass gives premium games another way to compete in a landscape that’s increasingly leaning towards free play, which is especially timely given the economic hardships currently hitting many countries around the world.

There are still many unknown variables when it comes to large-scale gaming subscription services, which is likely why Microsoft is initially limiting this service to two countries on a trial basis. Still, the data so far has been positive for both gamers needing to save money and developers getting some upfront cash flow from the Xbox Game Pass licensing deal. backed by viral marketing that comes from word of mouth discussions through improved access. Combine this with Xbox Cloud Gaming through any device and the vast library of Windows games in PC Game Pass, and Microsoft increasingly has a winning recipe that should hopefully benefit everyone involved.

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