Microsoft’s disclosures in the FTC lawsuit have led to some interesting new revelations in their Xbox business.
As reported by Tweaktown, it turns out that April 2022 was a particularly successful month for the green brand. Microsoft disclosed in one such document that they made as much as $ 9.26 per subscription.
Tweaktown then puts that into context, by pointing to the closest figure Xbox revealed for their subscriber for that date – as of January 2022, they had around 25 million Game Pass subscribers. That adds up to $ 231.5 million in revenue that they could have made for April 2022.
Tweaktown also estimates that Microsoft had 3.1 million Game Pass subscribers specifically for PC. That $ 9.26 they made per subscriber closely matches the $ 9.99 monthly cost of the PC Game Pass tier. For a smaller segment of their total Game Pass subscription base, PC Game Pass is particularly profitable.
This all adds up to an incredible amount of revenue being generated by what Microsoft themselves characterize as the number three game console company in the industry. It’s certainly very interesting, as Microsoft has chosen to limit public access to their sales and profit numbers. But all of this points to Microsoft’s Xbox business being very lucrative, regardless of where they stand on the console rankings.
For what it’s worth, April 2022 wasn’t a particularly strong month for Xbox, but March 2022 did see quite a few major releases. Weird West, Tropico 6, Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, WWE 2K22, and Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin all released in that month. Oh, and also Grand Theft Auto V came to the Xbox Series X|S, alongside the PlayStation.
But wait. Grand Theft Auto V is on Game Pass now, but Microsoft and Rockstar have had an on again, off again relationship in this account. Grand Theft Auto V did not launch Day One on Xbox Series X|S, so Game Pass’ success couldn’t be attributed to that game, even if it was a good day for Xbox outside of it.
It’s more likely that Microsoft’s hunch about consumer behavior was right, and they were just quiet about it. Game Pass is a success for Microsoft, as much as it has been a win for its subscribers.
And it really has, because the cost of two full price games can get you a hundred or so games to play. And it’s even more lucrative today, thanks to Starfield.