Since the launch of Xbox Live, players have had to pay to play online. Microsoft began adding more perks with Xbox Live Gold on the Xbox 360, such as using Netflix or Internet Explorer. Now it's adding a whole host of new features that are exclusive to Xbox Live Gold members on the Xbox One.
In an update to its Xbox Live page, Microsoft has provided a list of what features will require an Xbox Live Gold subscription going forward. Unsurprisingly, many of the Xbox One's most unique features will require a subscription:
So, what are these features that Microsoft thinks you should pay for? OneGuide is the software that will provide a customized cable TV viewing experience while also adding a social layer for friends to talk about their favorite TV shows. Game DVR allows players to record footage of their gameplay to share with friends, or even broadcast it live on Twitch. Skype is pretty self explanatory and SmartMatch complements Xbox Live online play by matching players up with the best possible players based upon their skill level and preference.
Besides online play, some people began to question whether or not Microsoft was actually offering a value with Xbox Live compared to what Sony offers with PlayStation Plus. With the Xbox One, Microsoft is answering that criticism by offering more value with an Xbox Live Gold subscription.
Microsoft has also started to offer free games on the Xbox 360 to Xbox Live Gold subscribers, but the offering thus far has paled in comparison to what Sony offers via Plus. We can only hope that it gets better with the Xbox One.
In short, you're going to be paying to play online on both next-gen consoles. Microsoft and Sony now just have to convince consumers that their value added perks are better than the competition's.[h/t: Engadget]