Microsoft has stopped offering annual subscriptions for the online service Xbox Live Gold, the company confirms in conversation with True Achievements .

In the Microsoft store you can only buy subscriptions for a month or three months. "Xbox has decided to withdraw the subscription from the Microsoft store for 12 months," said a spokesperson. The company gives no reason for the cancellation of the annual subscriptions.

With Xbox Live Gold, Xbox owners can play against others online, receive discounts on new game purchases, and receive some free games every month.

Media have reported that Xbox may discontinue annual subscriptions to get players to Xbox Game Pass. This gives subscribers access to a library with over a hundred games. With the most expensive plan, Game Pass Ultimate, people also get access to all Xbox Live Gold features.

Players are already being referred to Game Pass on the Xbox Live Gold web page. The Ultimate plan at 13 euros per month is more expensive than Xbox Live Gold, which costs 7 euros per month.

It was recently announced that Microsoft will add its streaming service xCloud to Game Pass later this year. It allows people to stream games from Microsoft servers without downloading them first. Games can also be streamed on other devices, such as a phone.