Xbox Live is arguably the best online service for videogame consoles. Many gamers prefer engaging in multiplayer titles on Xbox Live over the PS3. Xbox Live’s community is more robust and undoubtedly more vocal than PSN. The included headset with Xbox 360 consoles encourages interaction with other players. Xbox Live’s best features come at a cost of $60 a year, but half the members on Xbox Live aren’t paying anything.
According to Dennis Durkin, the head of Microsoft’s interactive entertainment business, Xbox Live has about 25 million members. Of that number, about 12.5 million members have a Xbox Live Gold subscription. The rest are Xbox Live Free subscribers. Xbox Live Free was formally known as Xbox Live Silver.
Durkin revealed these facts at the Credit Suisse Annual Technology Conference.
Xbox Live applications that don’t involve playing games are also on the verge of dominance. Durkin said of Xbox Live members in the United States are using services such as Netflix and Facebook 40% of the time. Keep in mind many of Xbox Live’s extra features require a Xbox Live Gold subscription. Gold subscribers in the US use Xbox Live for about three hours every single day.
Microsoft looks to increase those numbers with the introduction of Xbox Live Rewards. This program is open to all Xbox Live members, but Gold subscribers have more opportunities to earn Rewards Points and special prizes.