Microsoft chief product officer Marc Whitten has used the Xbox Wire blog to announce that the next Xbox 360 system update will see local currency options added to purchases.
It's the start of phasing out of the much-maligned Microsoft Points, although they will be accepted for some time to come.
Our goal is to make this transition as easy as possible for you. After the next Xbox 360 system update, when you go to buy something or redeem a Microsoft Points card or code on your console with your Microsoft account, we'll add to your account an amount of currency equal to or greater than the Xbox Marketplace value of your Microsoft Points, which will be retired.
Prices on Xbox Live will now be shown in local currency, so users won't need to calculate the real-world cost of, for example, a 1600MP game or an 800MP movie.
Microsoft Points that have been earned via the Xbox Live Rewards scheme will be included in the swap. "These will remain in your Xbox Live account and transition to local currency with the rest of your Microsoft Points," said Whitten.
Xbox Live gift cards will still be available, but will now be based on cash amounts rather than points. No firm date has been given for the next system update that will herald the change.