Microsoft to replace Points system with real currency, gift cards

By on May 15, 2013, 9:30 AM
microsoft, itunes, xbox 360, windows store, virtual currency, points, windows phone store

Microsoft is doing away with the points system used to purchase virtual goods on the Xbox gaming console. In its place, Redmond will adopt a gift card system according to sources familiar with Microsoft’s Xbox plans as first reported by The Verge.

The decision follows a similar move away from virtual currency in Windows 8 and in many people’s opinion, is a long time in the making. As we understand it, the gift card system will work similar to how Apple issues vouchers in iTunes. This will allow gamers to purchase real currency that can then be used to buy digital content. What’s more, the system will also accept traditional payment methods like credit and debit cards.

Sources say the new service will work across the full line of Windows marketplaces including the Windows Store, Windows Phone Store and on the Xbox. Gift cards are already in use by Microsoft in their retail stores but unfortunately, these can only be used in brick and mortar stores.

One would think it wise to announce the new feature during the company’s Xbox 720 unveiling next week but that apparently isn’t in the cards. Instead, Microsoft is expected to announce the new system during E3 next month. It should be ready to launch later this year in time for the company’s next generation console.

Do you prefer a points system for buying digital goods online or would you rather Microsoft use a real currency system so you know exactly how much you are spending per transaction without having to do any conversions?




User Comments: 8

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1 person liked this | MrAnderson said:

I think this is great.

The thing is, I did not mind Xbox Live Points all together; however, I was not pleased with the way Microsoft priced everything so that you would have a perpetual balance in your account that could never fully be spent unless you purchased more points in set amounts. This could have been fixed if you could purchase smaller amounts of points to cover a transaction.

Nevertheless, having more options to use regular old money: credit, or maybe even PayPal, will be good in overall. Amazon just introduced its own currency so go figure. Then again they have many options to purchase your stuff, so I suppose it is about more options to pay.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

This is far better but what about Games for Windows Live (or Marketplace) on the PC. I already have close to 10000 points. I hope us PC gamers are not forgotten as per usual.

Timonius Timonius said:

This couldn't happen sooner. The longer they take, the less $ they get from me....wait, Steam has had it right for years...oh well.

cmbjive said:

Glad to see they finally made the move. Buying blocks of points didn't bother me, but not being able to apply your balance of points towards download able content did.

MrAnderson said:

This is far better but what about Games for Windows Live (or Marketplace) on the PC. I already have close to 10000 points. I hope us PC gamers are not forgotten as per usual.

I'm sure they will give time for people to use up their points or some conversation system... otherwise there will be major fallout and you'd think that is something they would want to avoid during the year of the next gen launch.

JC713 JC713 said:

Good thing. It will make more money.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

This is far better but what about Games for Windows Live (or Marketplace) on the PC. I already have close to 10000 points. I hope us PC gamers are not forgotten as per usual.

I think you're referring to 'game points' and not 'microsoft points'. Or whatever they're called...

The article refers to the credits you purchase using coupons, which you then use to purchase content in-game. I believe the points you're referring to (from previous GFWL experience) are like those on Xbox - they are received when you complete achievements and count for nothing apart from 'rep'.

Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

I think you're referring to 'game points' and not 'microsoft points'. Or whatever they're called...

The article refers to the credits you purchase using coupons, which you then use to purchase content in-game. I believe the points you're referring to (from previous GFWL experience) are like those on Xbox - they are received when you complete achievements and count for nothing apart from 'rep'.

Yeah you're right. I am referring to game points. I was getting my wires crossed.

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