Since popular video game streamer Ninja made the switch from market leader Twitch to Microsoft’s Mixer service, the video games industry is starting to look at the underdog quite differently. Mixer can certainly attract new users with its industry-leading Faster than Light (FTL) streaming protocol, interactive “Mixplay” features, and deep integrations on Windows 10 and Xbox One, but Microsoft is now being increasingly pressured to offer Twitch Prime-like benefits to people who subscribe to Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass.
As a matter of fact, offering a free Mixer subscription every month to Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass members has been one of the top requested features on the Mixer Feedback portal since last year. Amazon is currently offering a similar benefit to Amazon Prime subscribers, who can also get four free games every month and free “Twitch Prime” loot for popular games such as League of Legends or GTA V.
Answering a question on Twitter about providing Mixer benefits to Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass members, Xbox head Phil Spencer said yesterday that these kind of synergies made “a ton of sense.”
We are always listening and learning. Lot's of people have suggested we find some connection between XGPU and Mixer subs which makes a ton of sense, good ideas.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) August 7, 2019
Even though the exec provided a non-committal answer, Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass could play a big role in Mixer’s monetization plans. As of today, Mixer offers a $7.99/month “Pro” subscription that provides an ad-free experience, early access to new features, as well as some bonus experts for chat and Mixer’s progression system. However, this Pro tier doesn’t include a free subscription to a Mixer channel, or exclusive in-game loot.
Amazon’s “Twitch Prime” benefits for Amazon Prime subscribers are a great way to make the service more sticky, though it’s worth reminding that Amazon removed ad-free viewing from the Twitch Prime benefits last year. Microsoft could certainly give Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass more incentives to spend time on Mixer, similar to the free one month subscription to Ninja’s Mixer channel. This limited-time promotion helped Ninja reach 1 million subscribers and one million followers in just a couple of days, something that’s really unprecedented for Mixer.
Do you think Microsoft should look to replicate what Amazon has done with Twitch Prime, or do you think leveraging Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass to give Mixer a boost could have the unfortunate effect of making Mixer too Xbox dependent? Let us know what you think in the comments below.