If it wasn't obvious that Microsoft was pushing hard to capture the family demographic, what with Kinect and all its related software, today, it's even more clear. Playing together as a family on your Xbox 360 is about to get a little easier. The Xbox Live Gold Family Subscription Plan is coming this November. For the price of two Gold memberships, the Family Plan will give you up to four individual memberships, all included under one family umbrella. That could be a savings for families with 4 different gamers, but the real news is some extra options making it easy to manage each account.
An Xbox LIVE Gold Family Pack includes:
- Up to four individual Xbox LIVE Gold memberships for the price of two – (US) $99.99.
- Family Center – a single, easy to use, destination for Family Settings and account management, accessible on the Xbox dashboard and on Xbox.com.
- The primary account member has the ability to purchase and dispense Microsoft Points to other Xbox LIVE Gold Family Pack members.
- Activity monitoring reports viewable on Xbox.com to help encourage discussions about safer more balanced gaming and entertainment habits.
- Simplified billing that applies all purchase charges to the primary account holder’s billing account and the ability to authorize purchases, helping to manage the family’s entertainment budget.
- Exclusive family content and discounts.
As a gaming dad, I find the one-step management for points and especially the activity monitoring to be the most interesting items on the list. And who knows what kind of "family content and discounts" will be available? Obviously, there are still many questions to be answered, like whether or not parent/kid accounts can be on different consoles for multi-Xbox 360 households. Let's hope the answers come sooner than later; at this point, it's certainly a step in the right direction for getting families to use the Xbox 360, albeit a fairly small step.