Xbox One is officially the first video game console to offer digital purchase refunds to all users by default. Microsoft announced the new “self-service refund” system using the console’s “Alpha” preview ring. The Alpha preview ring is normally used to test and showcase upcoming Xbox One features, but this time around was used to confirm the integrated refund process will arrive soon.
How Will It Work?
The Microsoft self-service refund will function much the same as Steam. Gamers purchase a digital title. A 14-day grace period then begins, during which a refund can be requested so long as the software hasn’t been used for more than two hours.
Microsoft is following Steam’s lead in other areas, too. Users will have to navigate to a special “Order History” to request their refund, rather than an obvious button or tab on the main product page (I’ve been caught out by this before. Thank you, Steam). Making it more difficult is the lack of direct console support. That’s right — if you want to activate your 14-day or two-hour refund, you’d better be near an actual web browser.
There are stipulations to the refund policy. Microsoft “reserves the right to block access for users who abuse self-service refunds,” as you might expect. Similarly, there are restrictions on certain products, such as “DLC, season passes, and add-ons.” Furthermore, there will be a one-day wait before you can trigger the refund process.
The refund-request system isn’t working in full just yet. But eagle-eyed Xbox One users have spotted the “Request a Refund” button alongside some titles already, albeit without any functionality.
Trial Games Galore?
The introduction of an Xbox One digital download refund policy has been a long time coming. Other services such as Steam and Google’s Play Store are more than happy to offer a refund. Microsoft is simply playing catch-up.
A refund policy of this nature is excellent for both hardcore and casual gamers, especially after the Xbox 360 free trial scheme was dropped for Xbox One. Personally, I think it works very well on Steam. However, I’m sure it is more of a problem during their gigantic service-wide sales.
Are you excited for self-service Xbox One refunds? Will you use this to trial more games? Do you think Microsoft could have introduced this sooner? Let us know your thoughts below!
Image Credit: Self-Service Refund via Reddit