Microsoft Points virtual currency to be discontinued?

According to a recent report by Inside Mobile Apps, Microsoft may be looking to phase out it’s Microsoft Points virtual currency in favour of the real thing, with the local currency of the Xbox live account being used instead. This is not too much of a leap from where we are now however, as you can already use real money to purchase full Xbox live games as opposed to the stored value points system.

microsoft-points

Microsoft points are purchased in set increments which can then be used to purchase gamertag pics, themes, game add-ons, as well as music and video content from the Zune Marketplace.  Microsoft have been criticised in the past for the way users have to purchase points in blocks rather than just the amount they need for the item being purchased, which often means you have to buy far more than you actually need for the item you want.  It can also be hard to keep track of how much you are spending using MS points.

Windows Phone accepts Microsoft Points as part of it’s Xbox LIVE functionality in much the same way as the Xbox itself, with avatar items using points, and game purchases and apps using traditional currency. Windows 8, Microsoft’s latest incarnation of the Windows operating system will be launched later this year on desktops and mobile devices, and it too will feature Xbox LIVE integration.  The Windows Store– the Microsoft equivalent of Apple’s App Store, used to purchase games and apps on Windows 8, will use hard cash instead of points when the platform launches.

Microsoft have not confirmed the authenticity of the report, or made an announcement on future plans for Microsoft Points, choosing instead to use their familiar canned response “Microsoft doesn’t comment on rumours or speculation.”

Source:  Inside Mobile Apps

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