Xbox Live News & Updates: Microsoft To Recycle 1 Million Gamertags; Price Hike Coming To Other Countries?

By Margaux Miller , Updated May 17, 2016 06:19 AM EDT
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Microsoft has been rolling out some changes to the Xbox Live platform quite recently. In addition to recycling old and inactive Gamertags, the tech company would also be increasing prices on Xbox Live Gold subscriptions in some countries.

Xbox Live Gamertags

According to CNET, Xbox Live will be allowing users to make use of Gamertags - that have been linked to dormant accounts from the first Xbox era - starting Wednesday. There will be approximately one million Gamertags up for grabs.

"These accounts never migrated to Xbox 360 and as a result, they have been inactive for quite some time," wrote Xbox Live programming director Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb in a blog post. He further noted that the Gamertags will only be available within a 24-hour time frame.

Kotaku reported that the new Xbox Live Gamertags will be available at 2 p.m. ET on May 18. Finding a preferred Gamertag will have to require some trial and error, though, so Xbox Live users better start curating a list of alternatives.

Although the company refused to disclose the list of Xbox Live Gamertags for availability, the company did provide categories as to which Xbox Live Gamertags fall under. These categories include proper names, pop culture references, food, animals and more.

Users can avail of the "newly-released Gamertags" on Xbox.com, the same platform that offers the easiest way to change an Xbox Live user's Gamertag. Alternatively, Xbox Live Gold subscription members can also change their Gamertags on the Xbox App, either through the Xbox One console or through Windows 10.

Xbox Live Price Hike

Meanwhile, reports have confirmed that Xbox Live will increase its price in a handful of countries, such as Austria, Hungary, Israel, South Africa, Sweden and Turkey. The tech giant claims that the Xbox Live price hike was employed due to "currency fluctuations."

The news initially came from a reader hailing from South Africa. In an email, the source noted that the price of Xbox Live would triple - from R50 ($3.25) to R159 ($10.33). Microsoft confirmed the allegation to Game Informer with a statement sent via e-mail.

"We occasionally update pricing in a given market to provide a balance of service and value, and in some instances, meet currency fluctuations within the region, and will be adjusting the price of Xbox Live Gold subscription in a small number of markets on June 20, 2016," wrote Microsoft (via GameSpot). "We do so always keeping in mind that our goal is to offer our members the premium gaming and entertainment service at a fair price."

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