Microsoft Points to be switched to real currency of at least equal value

Microsoft Points are something most people either hate or are indifferent to, with not many people viewing the virtual currency favorably enough to champion it as something that should stick around. As such, we've heard rumors for quite a while now that Microsoft planned to ditch the system, replacing it with real currency, but Points continued to live on. When the Xbox One was revealed, things changed, and now we're hearing that Points will be converted to local currency at least equal to Marketplace value.

It was revealed during the E3 event earlier this month that for the Xbox One, items would be priced in the gamer's currency rather than in Marketplace Points, putting an end to the system that Xbox 360 users have used for some time now. That obviously raised questions about what current Points holders would see happen with their points, and fortunately we didn't have to wait long for an answer.

The information was given to the folks over at Joystiq by a Microsoft spokesperson, who said: "When the transition takes place, the balance of Microsoft Points in an account will be retired and the customer will be given an amount in local currency that is equal or greater in Marketplace value. That value will be stored in your account and can be used similar to Microsoft Points to make purchases in the Xbox Live Marketplace."

What exactly is meant by "equal or greater" isn't known – how specifically Microsoft will determine what value is assigned to the Points and what gamers are looking towards. Regardless, what this means is the lowest value would then be $1 USD for every 80 Microsoft Points, which works out to $30 USD for 2400 points, and so on.

It wasn't specified when gamers will see the conversion happen, but it'll likely take place when a gamer updates from the 360 to the Xbox One. For the time being, Microsoft Points are still in use and can still be purchased. While this is good news to many, there is a catch: the funds will expire in one year. Such is according to Microsoft, which says, "The funds we deposit into your account at the time of the [Points to currency] transition will expire one year from the deposit date."

SOURCE: Joystiq