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Gaming now offers Xbox Live auto-renewal cancellation

The newly revamped lets your annual Xbox Live Gold membership die a natural death.

Once upon a time Xbox Live Gold account users had their annual subscription automatically renewed by Microsoft, but the newly revamped lets your membership die a natural death.

It's a welcome change, as the auto-renewal always struck us as egregiously money-grubbing. Forcing a user to phone a customer services rep to stop the annual fee being automatically swiped from his or her account just isn't cool, Microsoft.

You can now toggle automatic renewal on or off, and this isn't the only change Microsoft has made to its site. It now features Beacons, a function that allows you to mark the games you'd most like to play online with friends. Feeling like some Modern Warfare 3 or FIFA 12 this week? Tag them with Beacons and your buddies will know you're up for some fragging/ball-kicking action.

As Eurogamer reports, the new site, which has also had a visual overhaul (and more closely resembles the user interface of Windows Phone 7 as a result), also lets you search for movies and TV shows when using the Zune in-browser video-streaming service. It has been updated in light of the upcoming Xbox 360 autumn dashboard upgrade.

Happy about this change? Or is it long overdue? Zap us a comment below, or on our Facebook or Google+ pages.