Tokens’ previous purpose was twofold: Allow players to safely purchase in-game gold with real-world money, and let them extend their game subscription with gold they’ve amassed. That remains the case, but those who purchase a Token can now alternatively redeem it for $15 in Battle.net cash. That’s money that can be put toward various premium WoW services (such as character transfers) or content in other Blizzard games (or even games themselves).
Tokens, which can be purchased for $20, have routinely sold out on WoW’s auction house since yesterday’s news. This surge in demand has pushed prices to an all-time high. According to wowtoken.info, the average sale price has gone from 60,000 gold yesterday to as much as 115,000 today on North American realms. It’s a similar story on European realms, where prices have gone from about 111,000 to as much as 200,000 in the same period of time. Both of those figures are substantially higher than previous peaks.
This may prove to only be a temporary jump; as of this writing, prices in both regions have dipped very slightly. Whatever the case, this new functionality has–at least for a time–clearly tapped into a demand for more ways to spend gold.