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Free Xbox Live Gold weekend kicks off in North America

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Xbox Live Gold will be available free for North American users this weekend, Microsoft has announced.

The free trial begins today and grants access to online gaming features, entertainment apps and internet explorer.

Xbox 360 slim

© Microsoft Games

Xbox Live logo

© Microsoft Games



Users in Canada, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Brazil and Australia will also have access to the free trial, which ends on Sunday, December 2.

"If you haven't had a chance to check out the latest entertainment experiences on Xbox, this weekend is a great chance to give it a try," reads a Microsoft statement.

"From Thursday, Nov. 29 through Sunday, Dec. 2, we're unlocking Xbox LIVE Gold in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore, Taiwan and the United States.

"All Xbox owners in these regions, regardless of their current subscription, will have access to online multiplayer gaming, (like Halo 4 Spartan Op) Internet Explorer, Video Kinect and our entire catalogue of entertainment apps, during that time period."

The free weekend comes two weeks after Xbox Live celebrated its ten-year anniversary.

Xbox Live officially launched after the release of the original Xbox, being expanded into two tiers - the free Silver membership (now classed as Free) and the premium Gold membership.

It has since branched out onto Windows Phone devices and PCs in many forms, from the Games for Windows Live service to Xbox Games on Windows 8.

Gallery: View images of Xbox's 10-year history:

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