Microsoft Agrees to Change Xbox Subscription Practices

From PC Mag: Microsoft has agreed to change the way it handles subscriptions for both Game Pass and Xbox Live Gold following an investigation by the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

As the CMA explains, the regulator "identified concerns about certain features of Microsoft’s auto-renewing subscriptions, in particular: whether it was clear upfront that contracts would automatically renew; how easy it was to turn off automatic renewal; and whether people may not have realized they were still paying for services they no longer used."

In response, Microsoft is making a number of changes, which Eurogamer notes will be adopted first in the UK, but also globally by the company. Those changes fall into four categories: better upfront information, refunds, inactive memberships, and price increase information.

Microsoft will now be "more transparent" when someone is signing up for an Xbox membership so it's clear the subscription will auto-renew, how much that will cost, and that a refund will be offered if the renewal was by accident. Microsoft is going further with the refunds and intends to contact anyone currently on a 12-month contract to "give them the option to end their contract and claim a pro-rata refund."

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