Microsoft has revealed that the last 12 months were the company's best ever as far as acquiring new members for its Xbox Live service, and projected further acceleration in the coming year.
"The last 12 months has been our biggest in terms of acquisition [of new Xbox Live members] - in the EMEA [Europe, Middle East and Asia] region and globally," Xbox Live product marketing manager for EMEA Robin Burrowes told CVG
. "And we're actually forecasting the next 12 months to be even bigger."
Last month, Microsoft announced that its online service had surpassed 35 million members
for the first time. That's up from a reported 25 million members
in August of last year, suggesting the service added at least 10 million users in the past year.
That's a much faster rate of user acquisition than previously reported by the company: It took about 27 months to grow from a reported 4 million users in October 2006
to a reported 14 million users in December 2008
, and roughly 20 months to go from there to the 25 million users reported last August.
Burrowes said the Xbox Live stats "swum in tandem" with increased system sales
in the wake of last holiday's successful Kinect launch, and will only increase when a "whole bunch" of new entertainment partners are announced in the fall.
"We've certainly got aspirations in the console space to be the No.1 in terms of market share," he said. "Those aspirations are clear. We're exceptionally confident that the 12 months ahead will spark [Xbox Live's] growth."