Starting in June, Xbox owners won't need Live Gold membership to access streaming media apps like Netflix, HBO GO etc. As of now, users are required to have subscription in order to access the streaming service, but now they will no longer need to fork over money to Microsoft.
"Popular entertainment apps will be available for all Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners. Xbox 360 has been a leader in delivering entertainment experiences for years, with over 170 global entertainment apps and experiences available today. We’re constantly adding new partners and experiences to the growing catalog on Xbox One. Coming in June, anyone with an Xbox will be able to access popular entertainment experiences – whether or not you have an Xbox Live Gold membership. This includes great gaming apps like Machinima, Twitch and Upload, popular video services like Netflix, Univision Deportes, GoPro, Red Bull TV and HBO GO, sports experiences like the NFL app for Xbox One, MLB.TV, NBA Game Time, NHL Game Center and more.", wrote Phil Spencer, Head of Xbox.
Microsoft could decide to put a few of its services behind the paywall to offset the shift, however, at this moment we are not sure if the company is going to put a price tag on existing services or its upcoming content such as TV shows by Xbox Entertainment Studios.
This move by Microsoft will hopefully put it in a better position to compete with rivals, since neither Sony nor Nintendo charges a monthly rental to access streaming media apps.