As streaming services become bigger, more and more businesses are going to take up the model.
First it was food. Companies like Blue Apron and HelloFresh ship pre-portioned, ready-to-cook meals straight to your door. Pick your meals, order on demand, cancel whenever you like. Every year, more and more of these grocery delivery companies open up shop.
Then it was themed boxes. To suggest that there is a themed box subscription service for just about every product under the sun is only slightly hyperbolic. BarkBox – a box subscription delivering dog treats and toys – might be the most famous, but there are subscription services now for razors, T-shirts, toys, hot sauce, craft beer (a good idea, that one) and just about anything else you can think of.
Video game subscription services are also looming on the market. Electronic Arts released Origin Access a couple years ago, and for a low monthly fee, you can play any game on their online catalogue.
Now, Microsoft Studios are unveiling their own subscription service: Xbox Game Pass. The Game Pass works a lot like Netflix. For a modest $10/month, you have unlimited play of any game in the Microsoft catalog, including the Halo and Gears of War franchises.
The big selling point for the Xbox Game Pass, however, is Microsoft’s latest release. Sea of Thieves, which recently made its debut for both PC and console, is the first Microsoft game to be immediately available through their Game Pass. What’s more, Microsoft plans to follow this model for each subsequent release. From now on, their goal is to make each new game immediately available through their game subscription service.
Will the Game Pass actually save you money? That depends. If you’re just signing up to play Sea of Thieves, you’re probably better off just buying the game. Yes, it’s $60, but it will pay for itself in a few months. But if you’re looking at playing through Microsoft Game Studio’s extensive catalogue, this is a killer deal.