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Microsoft Reportedly Working On TV Service For Xbox 360 121

Posted by Soulskill
from the path-to-a-unified-entertainment-box dept.
tekgoblin writes "It seems that Microsoft may be in talks with media companies to license TV shows and movies for a new streaming service. With the addition of ESPN to the Xbox 360 over Xbox Live, Microsoft may be in a position to do the same for different content providers and charge a subscription fee for them separately. The idea is to better personalize content and only pay for what you want to watch instead of paying cable companies for all the channels you don't watch. Microsoft is looking into duplicating what they have done with ESPN to include channels such as Showtime or HBO and possibly Disney."
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Microsoft Reportedly Working On TV Service For Xbox 360

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  • iplayer (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mjwalshe (1680392) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @06:36AM (#34402570)
    Just team up with the BBC and offer iplayer, Free in UK the rest of the world can pay say £15/$20 month - then we can have full length seasons of Dr Who - whats not to like :-)
  • Windows Media Center (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Mr_Silver (213637) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @06:50AM (#34402640)

    Microsoft probably have a good chance of making this work on the basis that Windows Media Center is actually a very capable DVR and they have several customers of their MediaRoom solution. I've been running Windows 7 Media Center in my home for several months now and it's extremely slick and does the job reasonably well. It's UI is light years ahead of all the others - although that is probably helped by the fact that the hardware I'm using is significantly more powerful than your usual set top box.

    My only real complaints are:

    1. The EPG provider Microsoft uses in the UK is absolutely dire. They frequently forget meta-data and get the series link information wrong - which of course means that the experience is impacted. Our US friends don't seem to have these issues as their meta-data is correct.
    2. Even if you have the codecs installed, it cannot browse or play non-WTV or DVR-MS without the use of something like MediaBrowser (which itself, is a slick application).
    3. When you do get non WTV or DVR-MS files playing, FWD and RWD don't work. This can be fudged with a plugin called MediaControl but it isn't perfect.
    4. Some times it reports that it cannot record a show on a tuner because there is no signal. Doesn't matter what button you press, it'll show you the same error several times before finally dismissing.

    Compared to my old Topfield (which was considered one of the better DVR's here in the UK yet couldn't handle daylight saving and botched up all your recording timers, had a ghastly UI, put the wrong metadata in your recordings if you padded the start time, had a completely broken series link and would only work reliably if you flashed it with custom firmware) 7MC is a work of art.

    Desire the issues, once you've worked around these and installed a couple of other (free) applications then you have a very capable DVR which can not only record and playback live TV, but access your DVD rips from multiple locations around the house (with the correct meta-data and cover art), view, schedule and play back recorded shows via your mobile or desktop web browser and play back streamed video from a number of online sources.

    Yes, Boxee or XBMC would be a better choice if you just want to play video - but the GF wants to watch and record live TV which means that WMC is a good option.

  • Re:sigh (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Opportunist (166417) on Wednesday December 01, 2010 @07:48AM (#34402928)

    Disney channel is a godsend for every parent on this planet. Or so they think.

    Disney offers "entertainment" (read: Keep 'em occupied) for kids from age 0 to ... well, god knows, while at the same time you, as a parent, needn't worry that there will be any violence AT ALL, aside of a teeenie little bit of cartoon violence that is immediately resolved and where you get immediately shown that nobody was hurt. The figures tumble and wobble and fall and bounce but they don't get hurt.

    And it goes without saying that there is no sex. Romance, sure. Some guy falling in love with some girl, sighing and looking dreamy (or vice versa, don't worry, no male/male or female/female or other weird combinations possible), but you may rest assured that even a kiss is nothing more than a quick peck on the cheek.

    You can park your kids in front of that and ignore them for a while. And they will love it and watch it, the TV controlling your kids while you can do something more rewarding than spending time with them. Ain't it great?

    The question I'd have for such parents is just: Ok, no violence, no sex/nudity/whatever else you wouldn't want your kids to see, no reality whatsoever. Just a company firing episode after episode of their cutesy cartoon characters at your kids, interrupted by commercials telling them that they can have those cutesy cartoon characters at home and that they have to buy every piece of plastic crap Disney poops out?

    Really think it's a good idea?

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