Xbox Live Passes 2 Million Subscribers

Microsoft announced on Wednesday that its online gaming community Xbox Live had reached 2 million subscribers, doubling its size in just one year. According to the company, the service was signing up customers at the rate of about one every 30 seconds.

"Reaching the 2 million member milestone in such a short time speaks volumes about the depth and vibrancy of the Xbox Live community," said Robbie Bach, senior vice president of the Home and Entertainment Division and chief Xbox officer at Microsoft.

The company attributed the success of Xbox Live to the growing number of titles for the console that now allow for some type of online interactivity, as well as the option to download content to enhance certain games.

Along with the subscriber announcement, Microsoft said that by the time the Xbox 360 console is released over the holidays, both consoles combined would have more than 300 multiplayer games that are compatible with the Xbox Live service.

The next-generation Xbox 360 will be backwards compatible, and would be able to play games for the original Xbox system as well.

Users will be able to switch their Xbox Live accounts to the new console seamlessly, Microsoft said.

Changes will also be made to the service, including two levels of membership, a messaging center that gamers can message each other even when not playing a game, and something called the "Gamerzone," where members can find others with similar gaming preferences.

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