Xbox Game Pass significantly increases game sales and playtime says Microsoft

Xbox Game Pass is a subscription service which costs $9.99 per month. Customers gain access to over a hundred games — ranging from smaller experiences to massive blockbusters — for a limited time. Just like Netflix, some titles are permanent additions while others rotate in and out. Since the service launched, many gamers have been asking Microsoft how many subscribers it has. While usually the company doesn't comment on sales figures, during an interview between Microsoft's Executive Vice President of Gaming Phil Spencer and LevelUp, the former revealed a general count. There are "millions of subscribers" already.

However, what does this mean for Microsoft? How does Xbox Game Pass help the company? Luckily, the Head of Planning at Xbox Game Pass Matt Percy provided some answers. Nico Partners' Daniel Ahmad compiled some information from a report by The Sydney Morning Herald. Microsoft has seen the following growth as a result of Xbox Game Pass.

  • 20 percent increase in playtime.
  • 40 percent increase in number of games played.
  • Whenever new games enter Xbox Game Pass, active players double.
  • 25 percent increase in preorders.
  • 10 percent increase in franchise sales.

These are definitely impressive results, especially the fact that there is a 40 percent increase in the number of games subscribers play. It's great to see that Xbox Game Pass is doing so well. Hopefully the trend will continue in the future as more high-profile titles join the service.

Do you pay $9.99 a month for Xbox Game Pass? Let us know. What do you want out of the service in the future?

Asher Madan handles gaming news for Windows Central. Before joining Windows Central in 2017, Asher worked for a number of different gaming outlets. He has a background in medical science and is passionate about all forms of entertainment, cooking, and antiquing.

18 Comments
  • I haven't paid $10 yet, so far I've paid a dollar a month for the last two months, my subscription ends on the 22nd though, so we will see if I continue it, I still have to finish Ashen and Hellblade, so I imagine I will. The thing I like most is that there are games on there I never would have bought, but am interested in (like the Shantae series) so it gives me a chance to play them without worry.
  • Look for a prepaid card (which you should be doing for XBL anyway). I got a year for around 60 on eBay.
  • Wonder what their definition of "play" is. Sometimes I don't get back to a game I played once or twice.
  • Hence the difference between number of games and playtime. Both saw increases but the latter didn't as much as the former did--likely because of the many games people start but don't get back to.
  • That's a problem with a lot of Sony single player exclusives. You only play them a couple of times and don't play them again. This is why a gamepass like subscription on the Playstation would never work.
  • Or you get bored half way, moved onto new games and never look back.
  • It is a success, no doubts
  • It's actually a no-brainer, especially for casual gamers and 'non-collectors'. Basically, instead of say 60 dollars for a single AAA title, I can get access to a rotation of a mix of 100 games for six months. In some ways, it really appeals to those that see games as simply casual entertainment, and not something to be 'kept' per se (anyone here with a backlog of over 100 games which we all know we'll probably never get to play anyways??). So set aside 120 dollars for a year, and just have access to some 100 different games of varying qualities. Pretty good deal I think, considering I anyways pay more than this for amazon prime lol!
  • Is there any way to buy a year subscription instead of monthly? I have a good chunk of Microsoft credit built up that I would like to spend on game pass
  • I think Amazon has them.
  • Cdkeys is selling a 12 month subscription digital code for $76. I'll probably pick one up before my game pass cancels next month. Amazon doesn't really offer a good deal on game pass subscriptions surprisingly.
  • I’ve used CDKeys before and haven’t had issues. Usually they’re reliable.
  • Keep looking online. I got a code on eBay for around 60.
  • Amazon has it. It was on sales around XMas, like half price? Cannot remember. But it was dirt cheap so I bought 2 years.
  • just saw you can get two months for $2. might try it
  • > 10 percent increase in franchise sales.
    hahaha, I'm the guilty one. Mortal Kombat 10 is my first MK (also played Injustice), then I pre-ordered 11.
  • I got that free month of Game Pass back in August and tried State of Decay 2 just to ***** and giggles. Fell in love with it and bought it the next time it was on sale.
    I would have never bothered with it had it not been for game pass.
    Same thing happened with Forza Horizon 4
  • "Xbox Game Pass significantly increases game sales"
    lol it looks likes Asher Madan didn't understand the sentence "10 percent increase in franchise sales".
    I doubt game pass increase game sales. I would think it's actually the opposite. If more people rent games less will go into buying new games. Talking about these numbers. I would say without actual context or details it's bit useless. These are numbers communicated by MS's marketing team. It doesn't really tell a story. What I would love to know it the number of subscribers. And how many of those are actually paying full price. The percentage of time people play game pass game. And also concurrent players for each and every games. But ofc MS will not communicate on these...