Xbox gets cozy with Verizon, Comcast
It looks like Microsoft is well on its way to delivering on the promise of offering live TV service on the Xbox 360 by the end of the year.
The company has entered into partnerships with Verizon and Comcast, and plans to lets Xbox 360 users tap into their existing TV service subscriptions to watch from the comfort of the Xbox dashboard, according to a Bloomberg report.
At E3 this summer, Microsoft unveiled an ambitious amount of new services expected to be available on the Xbox 360 by year's end. Among these features was the ability to watch live TV, effectively turning the console into a virtual cable box, along with being able to access music, sports, and movie content like no other console currently offers.
Bloomberg reports that Microsoft is in talks with more than 20 content providers in this effort to bring more non-gaming content to the Xbox brand. The company is truly trying to make the 360 the only device you need to have in your living room.
Apparently, the Kinect camera is a pivotal part of this strategy. The motion-sensing accessory has voice recognition capabilities and Microsoft wants, for example, watching TV to be as easy as just saying "watch TV" while you're in the living room.
In addition to letting Verizon Fios and Comcast Xfinity TV subscribers watch their existing television content from the console, Microsoft is reportedly inking deals with HBO, Bravo, and Syfy, among other channels, which could be made available to anyone regardless of their current cable or satellite provider.
This sweeping amount of new streaming content is expected to come together in a massive Xbox 360 software upgrade coming in the next couple months. Stay tuned for more details.