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Xbox Live Gold - Free For One Week In September!

Sponsored by Windows Live Spaces

UK - 7th September 2006 - If you love your friends, enjoy spending time chatting to them, playing games , downloading exclusive content and listening to music with them - then you'll really love Xbox Live. The great news is that Xbox® is feeling extra sociable this month and offering European gamers a chance to experience Xbox Live for over a week, absolutely free, from 20th to 29th September, 2006. The free week of Xbox Live is sponsored by Windows Live Spaces.

Xbox Live is the world's premiere, fully connected gaming service with more than three million members. It lets you find your friends, play with or against them through a broadband internet connection wherever they are and chat with them through a headset as you play.

Multiplayer, fully connected gaming action, including the ability to choose from a full calendar of events such as competitions and Game With Fame sessions, is usually only available to Xbox Live Gold members. However, on 20th September at 00.01, Xbox will flick the switch, giving gamers in Europe full access and the chance to see what everyone is talking about, until the free trial ends on 29th September at 23.59.

To make sure you can access Xbox Live during the free week, all you need to do is plug a broadband cable into the back of your Xbox 360 console. This will give you the standard Xbox Live Silver membership which will be upgraded automatically on 20th September. Then you'll get instant access to connected, multiplayer gaming, retro-style Xbox Live Arcade titles, the latest game demos, movie trailers, music videos plus participate in all the exciting events on the Xbox Live Calendar!

There are hundreds of titles available for the Xbox 360 that you can try out over Xbox Live, including Project Gotham Racing 3®, Top SpinTM 2, Rockstar Games Presents Table Tennis, Saints Row, EA SportsTM 2006 FIFA World CupTM, Perfect Dark ZeroTM and KameoTM: Elements of Power plus easy to play, retro style Xbox Live Arcade games such Pac-Man, Street Fighter® II' Hyper Fighting and Texas Hold 'em.

As well as enjoying multiplayer game play, there will also be a fun-packed schedule of activities taking place during the free week. Gamers look forward to the Halo 2 Winning Weekend, Mystery Gamer, the PGR3 Developer Showdown plus newcomers nights, the chance to win prizes and much more.

Xbox really is the place to hang out - since Xbox Live launched in November 2002, more than 3 million gamers have spent over 2 billion hours on the network playing games online with their friends around the world and downloading more than 50 million pieces of gaming and entertainment content from Xbox Live Marketplace. Plus 1,300,000 text and voice messages are sent via Xbox Live every day - a figure set to explode with the launch of the Xbox Live Vision camera on 6th October in Europe.

Stay tuned to the Xbox Live Calendar pages on Xbox.com in the coming weeks for more information on the schedule of events taking place during the free week of Xbox Live.

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About Xbox Live

Xbox Live is the first and only unified online entertainment network seamlessly integrated throughout the entire console experience, making it easy for people to find the friends, games and entertainment they want from the moment they power on their Xbox 360 system. Xbox Live connects millions of members across 24 countries to enjoy hundreds of multiplayer games, downloadable games via Xbox Live Arcade, free and premium playable game demos, music videos, and movie trailers, as well as new game levels, characters and vehicles for all their favorite retail games. More information can be found online at http://www.xbox.com/en-us/live.

About Xbox 360

Xbox 360 is the most powerful video game and entertainment system, delivering the best games, the next generation of the premier Xbox Live online gaming service, and unique digital entertainment experiences that revolve around gamers. The system was first launched in North America, Europe and Japan in 2005 and then in Australia, Colombia, Hong Kong, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore and Taiwan in 2006. More information can be found online at http://www.xbox.com/xbox360.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

About Windows Live Spaces

Windows Live Spaces ( http://spaces.live.com) is a free, easy-to-use, customizable social networking and blogging service that provides you with a place to connect with your friends, express your individuality and tell your story using blogs, photos and more. Windows Live Spaces is available in more than 36 markets in 15 languages around the world, and is deeply integrated with other Windows Live services to provide a seamless communications experience around a common contacts list.

For more information please contact:

Marie-Claire Suter

UK PR Manager - Xbox & Games For Windows

Tel: +44 (0) 118 909 4599

Email: i-maries@microsoft.com

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GamesIndustry International is the world's leading games industry website, incorporating GamesIndustry.biz and IndustryGamers.com.

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