Shareable Xbox Game Pass family plan leaks to crash PS Plus party

It's funny how the news dropped just as Sony's subscription service was hitting the headlines

Xbox Game Pass
(Image credit: Microsoft)

There are two kinds of leak when it comes to tech news. There are leaks of information the company doesn't want you to know, and there are deliberate leaks that act as a form of marketing. The news that Microsoft is working on a family plan for Game Pass on the PC and Xbox feels very much like the latter.

Don't get me wrong. As a parent and gamer I think a family plan is a great idea: I already have one for Apple Arcade, and for various TV and music streaming services too. But the timing's awfully convenient when Sony's rival, the revamped PS Plus, has just been unveiled.

It's a family affair

According to Windows Central, the Game Pass family plan would enable you to share your account with the rest of your household and it's set to launch some time later this year. Although it'd cost more than a standard Game Pass subscription, it'd still be considerably less expensive than having multiple accounts.

The service would use the same Family Account system Microsoft already operates for Office 365 users. Provided you're all in the same country you'd be able to play together on a single subscription. That's really interesting to me because as someone who co-parents there are times when my kids aren't here but might want to beat me at or do co-op with me in various online games; being able to do that with Game Pass titles would be great.

There are still plenty of details we don't know. The price, for one, and whether this would be a plan covering PC as well as console or if you'd need a different family plan for that. But the leak isn't really there to give us any hard information; it's to make people who might be thinking of a PS Plus subscription instead of Game Pass think twice, and to take a little of the wind out of Sony's sails.

And on that basis: achievement unlocked.

Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written thirteen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote another seven books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com).