Microsoft will no longer accept Bitcoin as a payment option within its Microsoft Store, which offers software and devices online. It will also not power the company's Xbox, music, and video stores.
"You can no longer redeem Bitcoin into your Microsoft account," the company said in an update first noted by Reddit. "Existing balances in your account will still be available for purchases from Microsoft Store, but can't be refunded."
The new rule applies only for Windows and Windows 10 Mobile stores, according to the page.
Microsoft had introduced bitcoin support in December 2014 and allowed users to trade in the cryptocurrency at the going market value via third-party bitcoin payment processor BitPay.
The option was limited to customers in the US.
"For us, this is about giving people options and helping them do more on their devices and in the cloud," Microsoft Universal Store corporate vice president Eric Lockard said in 2014. "The use of digital currencies such as bitcoin, while not yet mainstream, is growing beyond the early enthusiasts. We expect this growth to continue, and allowing people to use bitcoin to purchase our products and services now allows us to be at the front edge of that trend," zdnet.com reported.
Meanwhile, according to commentators, the reasoning behind the change was not exactly clear and Microsoft had to yet openly explain why it would no longer accept Bitcoin.
However speculation is that the cryptocurrency just did not catch on as a way to pay for goods on the Windows Store and Microsoft had no reason to continue supporting Bitcoin.
Users can still use any remaining Bitcoin balance credited to their Microsoft account to make purchases on the store, but Microsoft would not refund their remaining balance.