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Xbox 360 expands library of on-demand content

by Parm Mann on 6 October 2011, 11:32

Tags: Xbox 360

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Microsoft has partnered with nearly 40 global TV service providers to bring a wide range of on-demand entertainment to the Xbox 360 games console.

The new services, described by Microsoft as "a new era in television", will include content from the BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and LoveFilm, and are scheduled to roll out this fall as part of a revamped user interface.

Over a dozen third-party services will be available to UK consumers, with Microsoft confirming that many will be accessible to Xbox 360 users without an Xbox Live Gold subscription.

As part of the update, LoveFilm will allow users to "stream thousands of titles from major studios and independents", while Channel 4 is expected to offer 4oD, its on-demand 30-day catch-up service.

However, while Microsoft has revealed that the BBC will be part of its upcoming strategy, it hasn't revealed the extent of the BBC partnership and makes no mention of the Beeb's hugely-successful iPlayer.

According to earlier reports, plans to bring BBC iPlayer to Xbox 360 hit a stumbling block due to Microsoft's desire to charge a fee for using the service. Such a move would contravene BBC policy, which states that its audience already pay for its services via the license fee and shouldn't be charged extra.

Microsoft's willingness to make content available without an Xbox Live Subscription may have paved the way for BBC iPlayer on Xbox 360, and the BBC has hinted at deep integration.

Commenting on the announcement, Cyrus Saihan, a senior business development manager at BBC Future Media, stated that "this deal will mean that the BBC will feature on all of the major gaming platforms in the UK (Wii/PS3/Xbox) and will be a key service on Xbox LIVE."

A complete list of confirmed Xbox 360 entertainment partners can be found below.

Entertainment Partners on Xbox 360 (Existing and New)

•    ABC iView – Australia 
•    AlloCiné – France, Germany, Spain, U.K.  
•    Antena 3 – Spain 
•    Astral Media’s Disney XD – Canada 
•    AT&T** – U.S. 
•    BBC – U.K. 
•    blinkbox – U.K. 
•    Bravo – U.S. 
•    BSkyB** – U.K. 
•    Canal+* – France, Spain 
•    Channel 4 – U.K. 
•    Channel 5 – U.K. 
•    CinemaNow (Best Buy) – U.S. 
•    Comcast – U.S. 
•    Crackle – Australia, Canada, U.K., U.S. 
•    Dailymotion – Available in 32 markets   
•    EPIX – U.S. 
•    ESPN** – U.S. 
•    Facebook** – Available in all 35 Xbox LIVE markets 
•    FOXTEL** – Australia 
•    GolTV – Spain 
•    HBO GO – U.S. 
•    Hulu – Japan 
•    Hulu +**– U.S. 
•    iHeartRadio (Clear Channel) – U.S. 
•    Last.fm** – U.K., U.S. 
•    LOVEFiLM – Germany, U.K.  
•    Manga Entertainment – U.S. 
•    Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment/Real Sports – Canada 
•    Mediaset – Italy 
•    MSN with MSNBC.com – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Spain, U.K.    
•    MUZU.TV – France, Germany, Italy, Spain, U.K. 
•    Netflix**– Canada, U.S. 
•    Rogers On Demand Online (RODO) – Canada 
•    RTVE – Spain 
•    SBS On Demand – Australia 
•    Syfy – U.S. 
•    Telefonica – Spain 
•    Televisa – Mexico   
•    “The Today Show” – U.S. 
•    TELUS** – Canada 
•    TMZ – U.S. 
•    Twitter** – Available in all 35 Xbox LIVE markets 
•    UFC – Canada, U.S. 
•    Verizon – U.S. 
•    VEVO – Canada, U.K., U.S. 
•    VimpelCom** – Russia 
•    Vodafone Portugal** – Portugal 
•    YouTube – Available in 22 markets 
•    ZDF – Germany 
•    Zune** – Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain

* Xbox LIVE Gold membership and/or other subscriptions/fees required. Kinect functionality varies by feature, provider and region. 
** Denotes existing partners on Xbox LIVE available today.

HEXUS Forums :: 5 Comments

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Should be good for Windows 8 too then, seeing as it's getting the Xbox treatment. Would be nice to have a centralised area built into the OS to access all this stuff :)
About time!
Just got an email. No iplayer… Just 4OD, demand 5 and youtube plus a few others (http://www.xbox.com/en-gb/LIVE/partners?uid=106104169&tid=9134). How disappointing…
Yeah I got the same Mail. They've (Ms) have missed a chance here for sure.

Greed is not good.
“A new era in television” indeed, for anyone who doesn't already have a Smart TV or even a PS3.