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Is there a way to purchase Battlefield 3 and/or Battlefield 3 Premium online and be able to give that copy to a friend? (buy it online without binding it to your own account)

For instance, just get ahold of the game's product key and give that to them so that they can activate the game on their Origin account?

There doesn't appear to be any option to do so via Origin.

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PS: Who exactly likes Origin? Anyone? – Lemmings19 Feb 17 '13 at 21:34
The interface is semi-pleasant. Other than that, Steam >> Origin. Sorry EA. – Sadly Not Feb 19 '13 at 2:13
Origin allowed you to install games in a separate directory before Steam did, which may have pushed Steam to add the feature, which in turn pleases me. – Ampersand Feb 19 '13 at 12:38
I'll take Steam's interface over Origin's garbage any day of the week. That said, I don't see why this question should be considered off topic -- we're not here to make value judgements on publishers or digital distribution platforms, and he's asking a valid question. – Shadur Feb 19 '13 at 13:45
I think the only good thing about Origin is that it starts fast. Steam takes way to long to start up. – vartec Mar 21 '13 at 15:50
up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can purchase the game from another retailer and simply give the key to the recipient. There are many sites. Here are a couple Battlefield 3 Premium Edition links:

With Premium Edition, usually you will get 2 keys: one for Limited Edition (with karkand) and one for Premium.

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- was buggy and clicking the "Buy" button associated with Battlefield 3 Premium Edition did nothing but reload the page. - doesn't allow Canadians to purchase digital downloads (even though it gets downloaded via Origin). I'll add some more alternatives to your list. Thanks for the suggestions, though! – Lemmings19 Feb 19 '13 at 5:27
Are these available to players outside the US? if not, then this answer would be too localized. – deutschZuid Feb 19 '13 at 8:55
AFAIK most of them are also available in Germany, too, my copy of BF3 is from, so I don't think it's too localized. – Sentry Feb 19 '13 at 9:15
@Lemmings19 can be made to work with a Canadian credit card for digital download. – Ampersand Feb 19 '13 at 12:35
@Ampersand The other sites appeared to be readily available for use in Canada without any messing around. I purchased from GamersGate without a hitch. – Lemmings19 Feb 19 '13 at 15:55

It has been suggested by EA Support staff that people can log in with their friends' accounts to purchase the items.

I've done this successfully for my younger brothers so I know it works.

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It would not surprise me that this is a method the support staff at EA have suggested, and no doubt it does work. But it just sounds like a horrible idea from a security standpoint for both parties involved. If the purchaser isn't careful, his/her credit card info could be saved to the friend's account. And the friend? He/She needs to change their password after the transaction, because their account security has been compromised. I'd suggest either handing your friend the cash (or a pre-paid visa), and telling him to buy the game. – Trent Hawkins Apr 19 '13 at 11:50

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