Yesterday, Microsoft decided to halt Bitcoin payments, with speculation that the company would go the way of Steam and end them permanently. However, as Microsoft later clarified, this was a temporary measure, and functionality is now restored.
Previously, users were hit with a message saying, “You can no longer redeem Bitcoin into your Microsoft account. Existing balances in your account will still be available for purchases from Microsoft Store, but it can't be refunded.”
The reason behind the ban wasn't entirely clear, with officials simply stating “several issues” with the digital currency. Some believe its a reaction to its volatility, the price jumping from $17,000 this weekend to lows of $14,500.
It's been a recent trend for the currency of late, following a year of surprising growth. On December 17, it reached almost $20,000, before plummeting to $13,000 during the holiday period, and up again to $16,000 at the end of the month.
In a statement, a spokesperson said, “We've restored Bitcoin as a payment option in our store after working with our provider to ensure lower Bitcoin amounts would be redeemable by customers.”
You should now be able to add money to your account via Bitcoin on the Microsoft Store. As before, you won't be able to use it for gift cards, but games, movies, and apps are all on the table.