No Xbox Live, no problem

Xbox Live is not available in the Middle East and Africa, but this doesn’t mean you still can’t access it. Read about a known workaround you can perform to get Live up and running.

Tags: Microsoft CorporationXBox 360
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By  Gareth Van Zyl Published  January 5, 2010

Xbox Live is not available in the Middle East, but there is an old trick you can use to access it. It requires that you register your Xbox as not being in the Middle East and using an online service to get Xbox Live points and an Xbox Live membership.

Here’s how you do it. Firstly, you’ll need a Gmail account, and you’ll need to link your Gmail to a Windows Live ID. Then you’re going to need to pretend that you have a US or UK address for both accounts. 

Then get your Xbox running and select the ‘join live now’ option on your Xbox 360 dashboard. Enter your details using your new Gmail and Windows Live ID account. You’ll then need to Google for a UK or US street address when asked for the address, and purchase Xbox Live points and an Xbox Live membership. 

There are many websites out there that sell points and memberships, and it’s just a matter of performing a Google search to get hold of these. The way these sites often operate is that they email you a scan of the points card with a unique code. On your Xbox you’ll then need to enter the code and your address (you’ll need to enter a US or UK address).

This workaround has been used by many gamers for quite a while, but it highlights how it’s about time that Xbox Live actually becomes available in this region. It’s now 2010, and, still, no word or development around Xbox Live being available here.

Recently, Robert Dekker, E&D marketing manager for Microsoft EMEA, was quoted in the press as saying that Microsoft is “definitely working on” bring Xbox Live to areas in the world where Xbox Live is not available. 

“Unfortunately we haven’t been in a position yet to confirm launch dates where we don’t have Live ... . Launching Live now in any country is more complex than it was four years ago and obviously we are seeking to provide that high level rather than to say we could potentially launch something easy and quick. That’s not the direction we want to do and I don’t think customers will appreciate it if we do that,” Dekker was quoted as saying.

In the next two to three years, the next generation consoles will be here and it’s looking likely that even by then we still won’t have Xbox Live. It just seems ironic we are a region that now officially has the tallest building in the world, but we still don’t have something as seemingly simple as Xbox Live.   

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