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Microsoft patents Xbox Live upsell idea

Detects, offers, sells, installs content.

Microsoft has been spotted patenting an idea to upsell Xbox Live content to Xbox 360 owners.

Snappily titled "Automated Direct Bids to Purchase Entertainment Content upon a Predetermined Event", this "automated direct transaction and delivery system for digital content provides for automated detection of missing digital content or resources required for a player or participant to participate in a multimedia application in either a single player or multiplayer environment is described," explained the patent (spotted by Broke My Controller).

In other words, if a friend invites you to play a racing game and you don't have a certain track installed, Xbox Live detects this and asks whether you'd like the content. From there, without changing screens, the system will take the money required, install the content and start your game. You'll be able to chat with your presumptuous friend all the while.

The patent was filed in 2008, apparently, but was only cleared earlier this month.

Xbox Live expands later this month with Game Room, a new virtual space where arcade cabinets can be bought and stored and Friends invited over to play.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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