Microsoft’s strategy for the current generation of consoles,, differs from its approach earlier. While the sale of consoles has so far involved securing exclusive games and content, this time Microsoft is taking a more service-based approach. Game Pass, a subscription service similar to Netflix, , and Microsoft hopes xCloud, which lets you play advanced games on your mobile phone, will be a boon.
So with a change of strategy comes a change of branding. Xbox Live is no more, as Microsoft quietly branded its online service as an “Xbox network”
Xbox Live has been what Microsoft has called the console’s online platform, which includes the ability to interact with friends, download games and more. Xbox Live Gold, a subscription service that allows you to play games online, will continue to be named as such.
“Xbox Network” refers to the underlying Xbox Network Service, which was updated in the Microsoft Services Agreement, “a Microsoft spokesman said in a statement to CNET.” The update from ‘Xbox Live’ to ‘Xbox Network’ is intended to differentiate the underlying service from Xbox Live Gold membership. ”
It may seem like a small, cosmetic change, but it’s one that has affected many years of Xbox gamers’ emotions. Xbox Live has been around since 2002, starting with the original Xbox before being updated for each subsequent console. Others noted that the name change is likely to be a sign of expanded online services.