Microsoft’s Mixer to roll out Embers, a virtual currency, beginning today

Back in November, Microsoft’s Mixer live streaming platform announced Season 2, a wave of new social features that would roll out gradually to all users. Mixer first allowed users to spend their “Sparks” (a virtual currency you earn by watching livestreams) on stickers and effects in live chats, but the next phase of Mixer Season 2 is kicking of today with the addition of Mixer Embers.

For those unfamiliar, Embers are a new paid virtual currency that Mixer announced last Fall. After purchasing Embers with real money, you can spend them on premium skills like animated Stickers and full-screen effects, and using those on Mixer partner channels will support them financially. It was already possible to support Mixer partners using Sparks (Mixer’s free virtual currency), and the launch of Mixer Embers won’t change this. The Mixer team explained:

Embers provide a more direct form of patronage as Mixer Partners receive a fixed dollar amount per Ember spent on their channel. In contrast, Sparks spent on Mixer Partner’s channel go towards achieving Spark milestones for cash bonuses. Embers do not have weekly milestones, and do not impact Spark milestones.

Mixer remains a completely free service, but Microsoft is trying different solutions allow professional streamers to earn more money. Just like on Twitch, it’s also possible to subscribe to Mixer partner channels to provide them a regular income.

“At launch, Embers will be exclusive to Mixer Partner channels – so only Partner channels will offer premium Skills that can be purchased using Embers, and only Partners will receive cash payouts for Embers patronage,” the team explained. “This is just the start as we aim to make Embers accessible to more creators and not limited to partners.” For now, you can only purchase Mixer Embers on the mobile apps for iOS and Android, but the new paid currency will be available on the web starting next week.

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Do you think providing more ways to support Mixer streamers financially can attract more gamers on the service?