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Microsoft rolls out digital game gifting on Xbox One

Just in time for the holidays

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Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Microsoft is making it easier to give digital games and subscriptions as gifts on Xbox One. The company rolled out gifting — a long-requested feature from Xbox fans —from the Microsoft Store via console or computer after conducting a test period.

The feature will let generous gift givers purchase games, downloadable content and subscriptions (Xbox Live Gold, Xbox Game Pass) for another person.

Xbox One games can be purchased for another user directly from the Microsoft Store. A brief video of the feature posted by Microsoft’s Larry “Major Nelson” Hryb shows how it works: Click the “Buy as gift” button from the Microsoft Store, and put in the recipient’s email address. They’ll get a digital code they can redeem.

The feature appears to have a few restrictions at launch. Hryb’s tweet specifies that “select” games and DLC can be purchased. A notification in the video indicates that the purchase can only be redeemed in the United States. Microsoft’s gift terms and conditions page notes that “Gifts can only be purchased and redeemed by users in the same country/region.”

Regardless of any limitations, it’s a nice feature to have. Steam has had the option to gift games for years, Nintendo supported a similar feature on Wii, and hopefully Sony will offer the option at some point for PlayStation users.

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