Microsoft Will Leave the Gaming Business If It Can’t Get 100+ Million Xbox Game Pass Users by 2027, Phil Spencer Claims

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Image: Xbox

Sony and Nintendo will be the last gaming giants standing if Microsoft fails to meet its sales goals for Xbox Game Pass. That’s according to Xbox head Phil Spencer, who, as revealed by the FTC v. Microsoft documents that were released and subsequently removed today, told lawyers during a court event that Xbox would “exit the gaming business” if it failed to get 100 million customers to sign up for Game Pass by fiscal year 2027. Spencer mentioned this after he was shown a slide from the devices organization that forecasted 100 million Game Pass subscribers by FY29 and FY30—something that the executive apparently didn’t agree with and thought would spell the end for Xbox.

I do not believe that that is what the future Xbox business would look like. This is a presentation from our devices organization to the gaming leadership team, so this is the view from the team that is chartered with building our hardware on what the future business would look like.

I can fairly safely say that if we do not make more progress than this off of console, we would exit the gaming business. If this were the outcome, we would — I don’t believe we’d still be in the business.

A majority of our customers are found off of our own hardware, I would hope by earlier than 2030. So, when you asked me if I agreed with this chart that the light green and blue depending on what colors you see there would have to be much larger much earlier. I would say by FY26, ’27 that we should be in that position, or we’d have to make a different decision with the business.

Image: Microsoft

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Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

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