Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Hello XBox, Goodbye Set Top Box

Not a fan of your cable company and its set top box. Be patient, change is a coming. Gamers, with access to XBox Live may soon be able to ditch their cable for programming through their game system. Xbox already enables movies on demand via Netflix and other apps, and is now starting to do deals to get cable programming directly.

"They want Xbox to be seen not merely as a gaming machine for teenagers, but as a media portal for parents and grandparents, too. The company is even producing shows for users: it is in the middle of the second season of '1 vs. 100,' an interactive version of a game show that was on NBC. The content ambitions do not end there. Microsoft has held in-depth talks with the Walt Disney Company about a programming deal with ESPN, according to people close to the talks, who requested anonymity because the talks were intended to be private....Similarly, users of the Sony PlayStation can tune into BBC shows and see Weather Channel updates, as well as stream Netflix. Last week, Netflix extended its streaming service to the Nintendo Wii."

Who needs a DVR when everything is accessible on demand. Even so, adding DVR capabilities to the XBox and enable access via antenna for broadcast programming and say so long to your cable subscription. Cable's loss will be Microsoft's gain.