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Inflated Xbox Live beta pricing issues an ‘unintended error’ says Microsoft
When Xbox Live updates later this month, it’s going to remove Microsoft Points and replace them with local currency options. Some lucky users got to try the currency conversion process via a beta Xbox Live update and reported a serious error: that the conversion process actually made content a hell of a lot more expensive to purchase. Microsoft quickly reached out and responded after the internet went insane. Joystiq was the first to report on Microsoft’s stuff-up. Microsoft’s official statement follows below.
“We are aware that select regions experienced some incorrect game title pricing in the Xbox Live beta. This was an unintended error that we are in the process of fixing. We’ll be reimbursing impacted beta participants for the difference in what was paid and what the price will be after the update is available to all members.
Of note, beta programs give us a chance to test, fix and correct issues like this. As with all betas, we take the learnings from our program and make corrections and adjustments prior to the update being available to all members. As always, we appreciate the participation of our beta customers in helping us launch and build great products.”
Microsoft details the currency transition here, where it said that “customer will be given an amount in local currency that is equal or greater in Marketplace value.”
Polygon reported that the UK Xbox Live beta testers were hit especially hard by the inflated prices. It’s time for some money talk, so try not to tune out just yet:
400 Microsoft Points (MSP) valued at £3.40 cost the beta testers £4.49, a 32% increase. In our opinion, that is wildly unacceptable considering that the cheapest games cost 800 MSP. Sure, there are specials and games drop by as much as 50%, but that’s few and far between.
On the highest end of the points scale, 1 600 MSP increased from £13.60 to £14.99, a full 10% and again, simply not on. Microsoft’s promise of “equal or greater than” was a smokescreen that the company used to drain more money out of us. We’re glad Microsoft’s apologized and is in the process of reimbursing its beta users, but this is yet another error from a once great company that leaves a bad taste in our mouths.
Microsoft seems to stuck in a continuous cycle of turn-and-burn. Want to try out used games on the Xbox One? Sorry, no you can’t/kind of/okay we’ll turn it all off for now. And now this: yet another mistake turned into a hasty apology after fan outrage. The Microsoft shame train keeps on rolling.