EA Sports offering rewards debit card
[UPDATE] Reloadable prepaid Visa card lets gamers earn points for shopping at select online, brick-and-mortar retailers, redeemable for publishing label titles.
In April, EA Sports president Peter Moore held court at the Fourth Annual MI6 Game Marketing Conference. While his presentation covered a breadth of topics, Moore was particularly interested in expanding the EA Sports brand in ways not directly associated with gaming, such as EA Sports-branded restaurants or sporting equipment. That expansion also apparently includes plastic.
Today, EA revealed it latest plan to keep its sports sims at the top of the charts, announcing the EA Sports-branded Visa debit card. The card can be used at "thousands of brick-and-mortar and online retailers," according to EA. Examples provided by the publisher include retail stores, such as Macy's, Barnes & Noble, and Office Max, with online outlets including Wal-Mart, iTunes, and the Gap.
[UPDATE] Following the publication of this story, EA clarified its Rewards Points structure. According to an EA Sports representative, card holders will receive 100 points per $1 in "rewards back" offered by individual merchants. "For instance, if you spend $100 at the iTunes store and they offer 2 percent rewards back, you would receive 200 points," the rep stated.
Beginning December 15, these points can then be used to buy EA Sports titles through the publisher's Web site. Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 titles can be had for 6,500 points, while Wii games will require 5,500 points.
Gamers can reload the prepaid debit card in a number of ways, including payroll direct deposit and checking account allocation. Money can be added to the card in $10 increments, with a daily maximum deposit of $950 and a monthly restriction of $4,500. Notably, the card carries a $1.99 monthly service charge. A full rundown of terms, conditions, and fees is available through EA's Web site.