Microsoft to ditch Xbox Points in time for Xbox 720

The Xbox Points system has been a bone of contention for as long as the virtual currency has been in existence, asking kids and adults alike to keep seemingly nonsensical exchange rates in their heads in order to work out how much an Arcade game or downloadable content will actually cost them.

Soon, however, that shouldn't be the case. The Verge is reporting that Microsoft is about to ditch the points system for its gaming systems, perhaps in time for E3 in June but definitely before the Xbox 720 hits the streets later this year.

Microsoft has already decided not to adopt Xbox Points for Windows 8, with content and applications being listed in local currency instead. You know exactly how much something costs before buying it, and can pay using conventional means tagged to your account. Windows 8 doesn't require you to pre-pay for items by buying bundles of Points.

According to The Verge's "sources familiar with Microsoft's Xbox plans", purchases on the Xbox 360 and next-generation Xbox will also be able to be made with normal credit and debit cards, but if parents don't want their children spending money directly, gift cards in the local currency will be offered too. The system proposed is much like the one adopted by Apple for iTunes.

What's more, all of Microsoft's stores will comply, so the same gift cards and accounts will be able to be used across Xbox, Windows and Windows Phone stores.