Simplified cash system may replace Microsoft Points

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We have heard plenty of rumors surrounding the next gen gaming consoles in recent months, but there a number of new things that have been added to the current models. Today we have rumors that a simplified cash system may replace Microsoft Points.

An article on Inside Mobile Apps is reporting a source is claiming that the virtual currency system will be discontinued by the end of 2012. This will affect developers and users of Xbox Live, Windows Phone, and the Zune Marketplace.

It will be replaced by transactions that will use real money and based on each regions currency for all Windows Phone content. This will bring the mobile platform in line with rivals such as the Android Market and the App Store.

When Microsoft were asked about the rumors the company refused to comment, and stated they never do on rumors or speculation. Mobile developers that have agreements with the company have been warned to plan ahead for their upcoming DLC and in-app purchase with the change in mind.

After the changes takes place users with existing Microsoft Points left over will see them changed into their local currency. The points are also used to purchase media content and games via Xbox Live, PC and Windows Phone, and the Zune Marketplace but this system is not used universally.

With Xbox Live the prices for the full games are listed in dollars, but users purchase DLC content with Microsoft Points. Meanwhile on Windows Phone applications are also priced in a similar way, but users can make in-app purchases with the Points. Users can also use the Points to purchase accessories for their Xbox Live avatars, and these points can also be purchased direct from the handset.

This move may surprise some users but the company has been slowly bringing in cash purchases to Xbox Live, which is where the most points are used. With a cash based system it will bring it into line with rival platforms, and the points to cash conversion can be confusing for some users, and often leads them to purchase points they don’t need.

Would you prefer a cash based system?

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