xbox360andkinect

It is now official.  The Xbox 360 platform will turn your game console into even more of an entertainment hub with the addition of more video streaming services starting this upcoming holiday season.

Today Microsoft announced the beginning of “a new era in television where your entertainment becomes instantly searchable, easily discoverable and enjoyable from a single device – Xbox 360.”

According to the press release almost 40 television and entertainment companies have signed on for the new service which will be provided in more than 20 countries.

Some of those included are:

  • Bravo (US)
  • Comcast (US)
  • HBO GO (US)
  • Verizon FIOS (US)
  • SyFy (US)
  • BBC (UK)
  • Telefónica (Spain)
  • Rogers on Demand (Canada)
  • Televisa (Mexico)
  • ZDF (Germany)
  • MediaSet (Italy)

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“Today’s announcement is a major step toward realizing our vision to bring you all the entertainment you want, shared with the people you care about, made easy,” said Don Mattrick, president of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “Combining the world’s leading TV and entertainment providers with the power of Kinect for Xbox 360* and the intelligence of Bing voice search will make TV and entertainment more personal, social and effortless.”

The Xbox 360 and Xbox Live network has over 35 million members worldwide, who spend 21 billion hours a month on Xbox Live and their video consumption has tripled over the last year.  Must admit that this is the right time for Xbox and Microsoft to get into the television business – there is certainly an audience out there on the Xbox system who wants to consume video through their consoles.

I have provided the Xbox 360 console screenshots below to show you what the service will look like on your console.  Interestingly enough this also gives us another peek, this one official, of the upcoming Xbox 360 Dashboard update that is expected next month.

prod_xboxTVHome_webprod_xboxTVXfinity_web
prod_xboxTVVerizon_webprod_xboxTVSearch_web
prod_xboxTVSearchResult_webprod_xboxTVVideo_web
prod_xboxTVApps_webprod_xboxTVMusic_web

Apparently some of these services will be accessible using your hands free Kinect device for navigating menus, controlling playback, etc.  There will also be further social integration to share game achievements and favorite shows to your Facebook Wall.