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All posts tagged "points"


Friday, January 29, 2010

Could Microsoft Be Ditching the Points System?

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home News" @ 04:00 PM

http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/7...r-Amounts-.html

"Xbox Live deserves praise as a service, but being the standard for which other online gaming services are judged means its flaws come under repeated scrutiny -- for good reason. It's why I always find myself asking Microsoft executives a couple of the same questions whenever I'm given the opportunity to sit down with them: why is there a friends cap on Xbox Live and when will the entire service allow me to pay for content in real-world dollar amounts, rather than confusing Microsoft Points?"

Where do you guys stand on the issue of points? I'm not as negative on them as some people - I'm fine paying 800 points for an Xbox Arcade game, largely because I have no frame of reference for the cost. Interestingly, I found points to be very frustrating when deciding to rent SD and HD video downloads - I know how much a DVD or Blu-ray rental costs at my local video store, so having to fire up a Web browser to calculate how much a video downloads costs ticked me off. I like the idea of micro-transactions for game content, but think that it could co-exist alongside all the other content (songs, videos, games) being in dollar amounts. Any changes made to Xbox Live would rippled down to the Zune Marketplace. What's your take?


Monday, November 24, 2008

Get Common's New Album for 99c on December 9

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Media" @ 10:30 AM

http://social.zune.net/artist/Commo...2a3933/overview

"Brace yourself for the music of the future with Common's new album, Universal Mind Control. The Zune staff loved this latest work from Common and wanted the world to hear it, starting with you. So, to help spread the word, for a limited time you can get the entire album for the price of just one song."

Hip-hop artist, Common (a.k.a. Common Sense), is releasing his new album, Universal Mind Control, on December 9 for just 79 Points (99c). It's a limited-time offer, and one that requires a small purchase, so take note.

First, install the Zune 3.x software if you haven't already, then purchase 400 or more Microsoft Points for your account. On the 9th, sign into the Zune Marketplace and add Universal Mind Control to your cart for 79 Points. Any remaining Points can be used to purchase additional Xbox or Zune content. It's that simple!


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Purchase Microsoft Points With Your Phone... In Japan

Posted by Darius Wey in "Digital Home News" @ 10:30 AM

http://blog.wired.com/games/2008/05...o-to-suppo.html



What if filling up on Microsoft Points was as easy as picking up your phone and having the cost added to your phone bill? That's how it is for NTT DoCoMo users in Japan, and hopefully, that's just a starting point.

If Microsoft is working with other carriers to make this available around the world, great. If not, they probably should. A vast majority of Xbox Live Marketplace and Zune Marketplace users probably have a mobile device of some sort - some have their reasons against directly linking their Windows Live ID and credit card together, while others don't always want to make the trek to their local store to pick up one of the many Microsoft Points cards on offer, so this third option makes a lot of sense.


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Zune Pays to Share? Yes.

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Talk" @ 12:00 PM

http://www.gizmodo.com/gadgets/portable-media/confirmed-microsoft-to-reward-zune-song-sharing-214800.php

"When we last left off, the consensus was that Microsoft was still planning on rewarding song sharing with the Zune. Now we've got pretty much confirmation - unofficial, that is - that Microsoft is planning this feature. At a conference in Seattle this past Saturday, both J Allard and Christina Calio, both from the Zune team, talked about implementing such a system. The Zune team plans to reward people with Microsoft Marketplace Points, the same points you use on both Zune Marketplace and Xbox 360 Marketplace."


Courtesy of Artghost.com

So after all of last month's suggestions, it looks like you may get paid to share after all - paid in Microsoft Points, that is - although, I don't think it'll be as simple as it sounds. For example, Microsoft will have to put in some safeguards to prevent unauthorized sharing (i.e., spamming one's own secondary device). And how will offline users benefit from Points? So many questions, so few answers.


Monday, November 13, 2006

Microsoft Points: Deal or No Deal?

Posted by Aaron Roma in "Zune Talk" @ 11:15 PM

http://www.applematters.com/index.php/section/comments/1640/

"As we all know, purchasing songs, videos or games from the iTMS only requires a customer to create an account and have a valid credit card. Thus, like most other business transactions, you purchase a good and the price of that good is billed to your credit card. It works the same way at the grocery store, at the gas station or in a restaurant. And for the most part it seems like a pretty good system. Plenty of people have credit cards and they understand the concept of purchasing items with them. So, how, you ask, could Microsoft screw this up?"

James Stoup over at Apple Matters offers up a rather strong opinion of Microsoft's decision to base the Zune Marketplace on their Points system, rather than cold hard (plastic) cash. This has been a topic of much discussion since the details became public. While I detect just a tad bit of bias in Mr. Stoup's post, he does bring up some valid points, while completely overlooking some of the benefits of such a system. His post did get me thinking about the pros and cons of the point system. I won't go into detail about the drawbacks (purchasing in preset amounts: $5, $15, $25, $50; the points "conversion": $1=80 points), you can gleam those from the above article. In the best scenario, the Zune Marketplace would support points AND credit cards. (Maybe this will be rectified in the future.)

Since we are limited to points for now, I do want to point out a few of the benefits of the point system. The most glaring benefit being the integration with Xbox Live Marketplace, and being able to use these points to purchase content from both. Also, using the points system facilitates parents setting up an "allowance" of points for their children, rather than turning Susie loose with a Credit Card. In my opinion, however, the biggest benefit could still be yet to come. The points system allows for the creation of a "micro-economy", that could enable the distribution of custom-created content. Imagine creating a hot new background for the Zune, and then being able to "sell" that background for 10 points. Your new garage band wants to get it's name out there? How about selling your custom tracks for 25 points. What about the possibility of Microsoft extending it's XNA Game Studio to the Zune for custom game creation? Now you can see your addictive new game for 15 points. There is a similar system to this used successfully in the eBook world, where you can purchase short stories for pennies from a "micro" account that you preload with $5 at a time. What are your thoughts on the Microsoft Point system?


Friday, September 15, 2006

Integration of Services: Marketplace and Points

Posted by Darius Wey in "Zune Talk" @ 06:06 AM

Earlier in the year, back when Zune was hardly a blip on the radar, I wrote an article that discussed the potential of Zune. It consisted of facts and rumours, but also some burning thoughts on my mind that I just had to get out in the open. With the Xbox 360 riding high, there were many things Microsoft could do with the Zune to make it a truly integrated experience. And based on all that was revealed yesterday, Microsoft is heading in the right direction.

Let's take a look at the Xbox 360. With internet connectivity, it connects directly to Xbox Live and the accompanying Xbox Live Marketplace, which is home to a plethora of free and paid content. Purchasing content is simple. You always have the option of using a credit card, or Microsoft's online currency system known as Microsoft Points, which can be acquired online or over the counter. But hang on, why a second option? Why complicate matters? Credit cards work remarkably well, don't they? Well, sure, but what if you don't have a credit card? Of course, if you're in that boat, you're stuck. Whatever the reason - age, employment status, bad credit rating, or even plain old fear of using credit cards online - Microsoft Points offers an alternative method of payment. In addition, they can be used for micro-transactions, effectively bypassing the minimum transaction amounts that some banks impose on their customers. They can also reduce the number of credit transactions, and thus, the number of credit transaction fees. Oh, and on a completely unrelated note, Points cards make great gifts too.



Now, when I wrote that article back in July, I hinted that Microsoft Points would work great in the Zune's online store, which of course, we now know as the Zune Marketplace. And guess what? It's going to happen. If you have an Xbox Live membership, you can transfer Points from the Xbox Live Marketplace to the Zune Marketplace, and vice versa (using the same Windows Live ID). If you're buying Points fresh off the shelf, you can use it in both Marketplaces. Whether it's the Halo 3 picture pack or the award-winning album from John Legend, Microsoft Points serves as a single currency system allowing people from all walks of life to sample some Marketplace action. In the future, we may see a rewards-based system centred on Points, and even access to hardware purchases. It's all part of Microsoft's vision to centralising and integrating their digital entertainment products and services.


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