An error in Microsoft’s MSP to real currency conversion rates caused price increases in an Xbox Live beta test, it has been confirmed by a Microsoft representative.
It was revealed yesterday that the dropping of Microsoft Points in favour of real world currency seems to have resulted in price increases for games purchased through Xbox Live, however a statement published today set the record straight and claimed the price increases were a mistake.
The issue was that Microsoft Points tend to give gamers more value for their money and when the Points system was dropped in favour of real currency for the latest Xbox Live beta the price conversions resulted in game prices increasing.
As an example a game that would have cost 1600MSP, the equivalent of £13.60, would now cost £14.99. These increases placed Xbox prices in line with PSN prices, however they look set to decrease once more after the problem is fixed.
In a statement sent to VG247 a Microsoft representative announced that “select regions experienced incorrect game title pricing”, showing that the increased price was a mistake, and one that Microsoft “are in the process of fixing”.
The statement went on to commit reimbursement to those beta participants that were affected and ensured that they would be given the difference, ultimately ensuring they eventually pay the lower price that will be offered to the wider public when the update becomes available.
This is not too much of a disaster, after all the whole point of beta testing is to spot flaws before general release and remedy them before mistakes can affect an entire audience. This has just shown the advantage of beta testing a product.
Microsoft were also probably aware that the transition from the Microsoft Points system to real currency would be a long and arduous task, it would involve rebuilding and repricing a whole load of aspects on Xbox Live, so a few bumps were to be expected. To find out what the transition means to you and for some information head over the the FAQ page that Microsoft has dedicated to the switch.
It is good to see Microsoft have come out and put this right as they could have quite easily increased prices and blamed it on the transition period, after all the higher prices were not extortionate and were in line with the main rival, but they avoided this cheap trick for more money, which is a nice touch from a company that currently has a bit of a rocky relationship with the gaming community.