MS: 'Pay for Live or face download delays'

For the first time Xbox 360 owners who log into Xbox Live Marketplace for free will face delays on when they can get their hands on the latest downloads.

The news comes from Microsoft's own Major Nelson as he announced that the latest Gears of War trailer will be available on Xbox Live Marketplace for paid-up Gold members first, whereas anyone using the free Silver option will have to wait "about a week."

Above: The Gears of War trailer is the first item to be released to paying Gold usersfirst.

The Major, known in the analogue world as Larry Hryb, admitted on his blog that this two-tiered download policy was about to become the norm, saying: "This is going to happen more and more (Gold getting things before Silver) so you may want to think about upgrading if you want all the latest and greatest trailers, demos, etc."

His comments come at precisely the same time as Sony's Phil Harrison confirmed that Sony's entire online service including web browsing, video chat and, most importantly, online gaming will be free to everyone. A feature that Live denies to its non-paying players.

What do you think of facing delays when you haven't paid? Is it only fair to let Gold users get the goodies first? Why not head over to the forum and let us know?

October 27, 2006