Microsoft is making changes to Xbox Live and Game Pass subscriptions following complaints from the British market authority, the CMA. Subscribers will be better informed about automatic renewals and price increases and may request a refund in some cases.
British Market Authority (CMA) launch Investigation in 2019 Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft and the UK market authority’s subscription renewal practices had some comments on the latter. For example, the CMA asked whether it was clear to customers who got an Xbox Live or Game Pass subscription that their subscription would automatically renew. The UK Market Authority was also concerned about how difficult or not it would be to turn off automatic subscription renewal and wondered if people would be aware of their subscriptions if they had not used them for a long time.
Microsoft has In consultation with the Capital Markets Authority I decided to address the CMA’s concerns. First of all, the US company will better inform customers of the Xbox Live and Game Pass subscription services about their subscription and its automatic renewal. Customers will also be more transparently informed about how to disable this automatic renewal, when the next renewal will take effect, how much it will cost, and how to request a refund after an incorrect renewal.
The US company will also contact customers with an automatically renewable annual subscription and give them the option to cancel their contract. In the event of cancellation, they can also request a refund for the remaining unused months of their annual subscription.
Customers who haven’t used their Xbox Live or Game Pass in a while, but are still paying, will also be contacted by Microsoft in the future. The Company will remind these customers that they can opt out and the Company will explain how to do so on their own. If these customers stop using their subscription services after that, Microsoft will begin to refuse payments.
Finally, Microsoft will better inform its customers about future price increases. This way, according to the CMA, customers should be able to better estimate whether or not they want the subscription to auto-renew.
The UK market watchdog is pleased with the actions Microsoft is taking and says other companies with subscription services should take a closer look at their practices. The measures will be implemented first in the UK, but they will be implemented According to The Verge “Soon” is expected in the rest of the world.
“Lifelong zombie fanatic. Hardcore web practitioner. Thinker. Music expert. Unapologetic pop culture scholar.”