Xbox Game Pass Ultimate tip: How to get 3 years of access to hundreds of games for dirt cheap
PCWorld|January 2021
This incredible deal is still possible, but who knows how long it’ll stick around.
ALAINA YEE

Currently gamers can pay just $1 for access to hundreds of titles across PC and Xbox via Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (go.pcworld.com/xfaq) service— but don’t activate that insanely cheap one-month trial just yet. You can lock in up to three years of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate with that same dollar (go.pcworld.com/gpul) if you play your cards right.

When you activate Microsoft’s promotion, it not only begins the trial, but also converts existing Xbox Live Gold and standard Xbox Game Pass subscriptions on your account to Game Pass Ultimate (normally $15 per month) at a 1:1 rate. Any prepaid time up to the maximum of three years gets the upgrade.

If you have only three months of Xbox Live Gold or Xbox Game Pass (or a combination of the two) on your account, you’ll end up with three months for your Game Pass Ultimate subscription, plus the additional one month from the trial tacked on. Equally, 36 months of prepaid time transforms into Xbox Game Pass Ultimate for a full three years.

Multiplatform gamers obviously gain quite a bit from this deal, as Game Pass Ultimate bundles together Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Game Pass, and Xbox Game Pass for PC (go.pcworld.com/ gapc). You’ll get unlimited access to a full range of titles across platforms, including upcoming Halo, Gears of War, and other Microsoft first-party game releases on PC.

But even gamers who play exclusively on PC benefit: Though Xbox Game Pass for PC only initially cost $5 per month, that price lasted only through the beta period, which ended September 16, 2020 (go. pcworld.com/sp16).

Loading up an account with three years of Xbox Live Gold ($180) and then converting it to Game Pass Ultimate for an additional $1 essentially locks in that $5-per-month rate for three years, which outlives the beta period pricing by a long shot. (You should be able to do this conversion trick if you participated in the Xbox Game Pass for PC beta.)

Afterward, you can still convert Xbox Live Gold and Xbox Game Pass memberships to Game Pass Ultimate, but at a prorated amount (go.pcworld.com/xfaq).

Read on for a step-by-step guide of how to secure this deal, which includes tips on how to maximize your savings.

CONVERT XBOX LIVE GOLD (OR XBOX GAME PASS) TO XBOX GAME PASS ULTIMATE STEP 1

Decide how long you want Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. To make the most of the deal, get as close to three years of Xbox Live Gold (or Xbox Live Gold + standard Xbox Game Pass) as possible, which is the maximum amount of time you can prepay.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM PCWORLDView All

Ryzen 5000 failure rates: We reality‑check the claims

Problems with bad Ryzen chips may be overblown.

4 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ : A giant leap in graphics performance

It’s the most potent upgrade the Surface Pro line has offered in years.

10+ mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

How to create strong, secure passwords by learning how to crack them

It gets harder to crack a password if it’s 10 characters or longer—but complexity matters too, of course.

10 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

CorelDraw Graphics Suite 2021 makes life easier for artists working remotely

CorelDraw Graphics Suite 2021 is here with new features for remote work.

2 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

HOW GOOGLE COULD TURN ANDROID INTO JUST ANOTHER SUBSCRIPTION

WITH A SMALL CHANGE TO PHOTOS, GOOGLE COULD BE UPENDING THE WAY WE THINK ABOUT ANDROID UPDATES.

4 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

HOW FRAME WORK PLANS TO BREAK THE CURSE OF UPGRADEABLE LAPTOPS

THIS SMALL STARTUP THINKS IT CAN PULL OFF SOMETHING NO PC MAKER HAS EVER ACHIEVED.

8 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

HP Spectre x360 14: Luxurious, with long battery life

The latest Intel CPU and Iris Xe graphics make all the difference.

10 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

Gigabyte Aorus 17G: A gaming laptop that's amazingly quiet

Awesome GeForce RTX 3080 performance without all the noise.

9 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

Aukey DRS1 4K Dash Cam: Nice 4K UHD video, easy to install and use

Simple, superhigh resolution, and easy on the wallet.

4 mins read
PCWorld
April 2021

GeForce RTX 3060 laptops hit the street, but more affordable models are in short supply

There’s just one at the $999 starting price, available March 1.

2 mins read
PCWorld
March 2021
RELATED STORIES

WINDOWS 10 ON M1 MACS: WHAT YOU CAN DO (VIRTUALIZATION, SORTA) AND CAN'T (BOOT CAMP)

VIRTUALIZATION IS KEY, BUT THE LACK OF A CONSUMER VERSION OF MICROSOFT’S M1 -COMPATIBLE OS KEEPS THE SITUATION IN DOUBT.

9 mins read
Macworld
April 2021

MICROSOFT WINS $22 BILLION DEAL MAKING HEADSETS FOR US ARMY

Microsoft won a nearly $22 billion contract to supply U.S. Army combat troops with its augmented reality headsets.

2 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #492

Here's Why Bill Gates (Still) Prefers Android to iPhone

When it comes to the great iOS-versus-Android debate, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates knows which side he’s on.

1 min read
PC Magazine
April 2021

TOOL CREATED TO AID CLEANUP FROM MICROSOFT HACK IN BROAD USE

A tool designed to help businesses protect themselves from further compromises after a global hack of Microsoft email server software has been downloaded more than 25,000 times since it was released last week, the White House’s National Security Council said this week.

2 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #491

MICROSOFT SERVER HACK HAS VICTIMS HUSTLING TO STOP INTRUDERS

Victims of a massive global hack of Microsoft email server software — estimated in the tens of thousands by cybersecurity responders — hustled this week to shore up infected systems and try to diminish chances that intruders might steal data or hobble their networks.

4 mins read
AppleMagazine
March 12, 2021

MICROSOFT: CHINA-BASED HACKERS FOUND BUG TO TARGET US FIRMS

China-based government hackers have exploited a bug in Microsoft’s email server software to target U.S. organizations, the company said this week.

1 min read
Techlife News
Techlife News #488

Microsoft's Viva Aims to Make Remote Work Easier

While many companies are still mastering the art of working from home, Microsoft recently introduced its virtual solution: The Viva employee experience platform helps folks learn, grow, and thrive, even from their kitchen tables. Powered by Microsoft 365 and Teams, Viva makes it easy for customers to merge existing systems and tools with fresh features for a more accessible, discoverable workplace.

2 mins read
PC Magazine
March 2021

AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER SAYS BING COULD REPLACE GOOGLE

Australia’s prime minister said that Microsoft is confident it can fill the void if Google carries out its threat to remove its search engine from Australia.

2 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #484

MICROSOFT KEEPS CHUGGING AS PANDEMIC CONTINUES

As the pandemic raged through the U.S., Microsoft’s business continued chugging ahead and beat Wall Street expectations for the last three months of 2020, powered by ongoing demand for its workplace software and cloud computing services as people worked from home.

2 mins read
Techlife News
Techlife News #483

MICROSOFT KEEPS CHUGGING AS PANDEMIC CONTINUES

As the pandemic raged through the U.S., Microsoft’s business continued chugging ahead and beat Wall Street expectations for the last three months of 2020, powered by ongoing demand for its workplace software and cloud computing services as people worked from home.

2 mins read
AppleMagazine
AppleMagazine #483