Microsoft's Xbox Game Pass service now has 18 million subscribers. The milestone comes as part of what seems to have been a pretty good year for Microsoft, according to a recent quarterly earnings call.
What does this Xbox Game Pass milestone mean for Microsoft?
In the earnings call, Microsoft discusses its revenues for the second quarter of the 2021 fiscal year. Q2 saw Microsoft reach 18 million subscribers on Game Pass, which will doubtless come as good news for a company that's clearly pushing gamers towards that service. In addition, Microsoft also noted that Xbox Live now has 100 million monthly active users, many of whom are presumably Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers. All in all, Microsoft says it's "pleased" with growth in consumer subscriptions via Xbox Game Pass (as well as via its Microsoft 365 service).
This news comes as part of a pretty significant year for Microsoft in terms of revenue. According to an official press release, Microsoft's revenue in Q2 2021 (ending in December 2020, thanks to the somewhat strange division of fiscal quarters) reached $43 billion. This represents an increase of 17% on last year. Microsoft also says it exceeded $2 billion revenue in third-party sales for the first time this year, with first-party Xbox content and revenue services growing 40% and 38% respectively.
Will 2021 be a better year to get an Xbox Series X|S?
Unfortunately, if you haven't already got yourself an Xbox Series X|S, 2021 is going to start in a pretty rocky fashion. In the Microsoft earnings call, the company says it expects demand for both consoles to be "constrained by supply" in Q3, meaning it's still going to be pretty tricky to get your hands on one. Microsoft says demand significantly outstripped supply the first time around, and it expects this will continue into Q3. It's worth noting that Microsoft doesn't make any predictions for further on in 2021, so fingers crossed for April and beyond.
However, it's not all bad news for Xbox in the hardware department. Microsoft says that the launch of Xbox Series X|S was the strongest in its history in the industry. According to Microsoft, these consoles managed the highest hardware sales ever in a launch month for Xbox. Sales of the consoles - as well as other revenues from things like Xbox Game Pass and software - helped Microsoft surpass $5 billion in gaming revenue for the first time in Q2 2021. It's worth taking a look at the full earnings call if you'd like to nerd out about some of Microsoft's other numbers.
Are you an Xbox Game Pass subscriber? Are you disappointed that it'll still be hard to get an Xbox Series X|S this year? Let us know in the comments below!