Xbox Live Gold, paying for accessing the internet of for Xbox Software License?
Last night, during my many philosophical thinking times, I began thinking about Xbox Live Subscription, a mini discussion erupt at my head about Xbox Live Gold
In first saw, Xbox Live Gold sound like a highway robbery, since even if you not use Multiplayer (Remember, Gold are firstly promoted as Multiplayer service) and just use service that cost MS $0.00 you still need to pay $60/year , while not a large sum (It’s around $5 /month, you probably spend around that much each hour) it’s are used as example of alleged Microsoft evil practice (By some parties), paying for service that you won’t use on hardware that you own?, What a rip-off
At first, it doesn’t make any sense, why you must pay for Xbox Live even if you use Xbox as media streaming box?
There come to me an idea, that Xbox Live Gold actually are subscription to the Xbox Software itself, Xbox Live are more regularly receive major update (Like what you expect from a Software sub), while the PSN received practically Zero major updates (At least in UI department), Wii received very few, if any major software update, the PSN are free, it packaged with the PS3 itself, and Sony still saw software as part of the hardware, While Microsoft saw Software are important enough and distinct enough to the hardware, Microsoft separated the Xbox Live Software from the Xbox itself, Microsoft are licensing the Xbox Live software to you as XBL Gold, while providing basic functionality of the software for free
The differences of what Sony and Microsoft saw of what is the role of Software in console, shaped the Sony decision to make PSN free (Aside being few years late to the Online gaming world), they view the console as an appliance, while Microsoft saw that Console is a, at its heart and core a computer (a PC Plus devices, as in Bill Gates Vision) and therefore the software are not packaged as one, and instead licensed to the User and the user are charged for using it
TL;DR You already pay for the hardware but Microsoft sold the Software that run in the hardware for an annual fee
Edit: Better Term