Xbox Founder Ed Fries Says Game Pass is Great for the Customer, But Might Not be Great for the Industry - NewsWilliam D'Angelo , posted on 01 June 2022 / 2,997 Views
Ed Fries, the person who led the team that created the original Xbox at Microsoft, in an interview with Xbox Expansion Pass podcast discussed multiple topics, including Xbox Game Pass.
He says Game Pass is a great service for the customer, but it might not be great for the industry as a whole as he compared it to Spotify.
"The one thing that they are doing that makes me nervous is Game Pass," said Fries (Transcribed by VideoGamesChronicle). "Game Pass scares me because there is a somewhat analogous thing called Spotify that was created for the music business."
He added, "When Spotify took off it destroyed the music business, it literally cut the annual revenue of the music business in half. It has made it so people just don't buy songs anymore. People don't buy songs on iPhone for example, because why would you? They are all on your subscription service app. Apple said they are going to take away buying songs because no one's buying them any more.
"So we have to be careful we don't create the same system in the game business. These markets are more fragile than people realize. I saw the games industry destroy itself in the early 80s. I saw the educational software business destroy itself in the mid-90s. They literally destroyed a multi-billion dollar market in a few years."
"Game Pass makes me nervous," he continued. "As a customer, I love it. I love Spotify as a customer: I have all the songs I'd ever want. it's a great deal as a customer. But it isn't necessarily great for the industry."
Fries did say that there was a point that everything in the music industry had to be on Spotify, but Game Pass is far from that point as the "percentage of all games that are on Game Pass is still tiny, and there are a lot of games. 200 games a week come out on Steam and more than that come out on mobile."
Microsoft announced in January of this year that Xbox Game Pass has grown to over 25 million subscribers.
A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012 and taking over the hardware estimates in 2017. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel. You can contact the author on Twitter @TrunksWD.