Lizard Squad takes Xbox Live offline once again
Microsoft confirms Xbox Live Gold subscription prices will increase in six countries.Reuters

Microsoft will soon be increasing Xbox Live Gold subscription prices in six countries next month. According to Game Informer, Microsoft confirmed that Austria, Hungary, Israel, South Africa, Sweden and Turkey will see the price of Microsoft's online gaming service increase on 20 June.

The company confirmed the price hike to Game Informer after the site received a tip from a South African reader. The reader's email reportedly said that the monthly price will triple from R50 (£2.2, $3.19) to R159 (£7, $10.15). The hike aims to bring the prices in line with those of the US where it is $9.99 per month and $59.99 per year.

"We occasionally update pricing in a given market to provide a balance of service and value, and in some instances, meet currency fluctuations within the region, and will be adjusting the price of Xbox Live Gold subscription in a small number of markets on June 20, 2016," Microsoft said in a statement to the site."We do so always keeping in mind that our goal is to offer our members the premium gaming and entertainment service at a fair price."

The company has not confirmed the new prices for Hungary, Austria, Israel, Turkey and Sweden yet. In the case of Austria, however, the price increase might be a bit complicated since its currency is the Euro. European Union countries are all charged €6.99, despite each of them having different VAT values.

"This is based on market rather than currency, and the new price in Austria aligns with other European markets," a Microsoft representative responded to Game Informer via email. "We occasionally update pricing to provide a balance of service and value. Xbox Live Gold codes are not region-locked. Customers may redeem any Xbox Live code regardless of where it was purchased."

The price hike follows Microsoft's recent announcement that it would release one million Gamertags linked to "abandoned" accounts from the original Xbox era on 18 May.

"These accounts never migrated to Xbox 360 and as a result they have been inactive for quite some time," Xbox Live programming director Larry "Major Nelson" Hryb wrote in a blog post.

Released over a 24-hour period, these Gamertags are only available to Xbox Live Gold members with active subscriptions and at least one year of cumulative Gold Status.

Xbox Live Gold members can access these Gamertags within the Xbox App on Windows 10 as well as the Xbox One console. Xbox 360 owners can use Xbox.com, the Xbox App or an Xbox One console since access to the newly-released Gamertags is not available from an Xbox 360 console. Players can grab their Gamertags starting at 2PM ET/ 11AM PT / 9PM BST.