Microsoft Brings TV to the 360


At this past weekend’s CES, everybody trotted out their new gadgets and services. Everyone talked about their sales figures and, for some bizarre reason, Sony won an Emmy this year. Among the speeches and the showcases, Microsoft (NASDAQ : MSFT.O) made a rather interesting announcement: the XBox 360 and Microsoft IPTV are coming together to add interesting new functionality to the living room.

Microsoft’s TV software coming to the 360 is big news because it brings a whole new level of value to the platform. If the software works as planned, you’ll be able to use your XBox 360 to record television, chat with friends over Live during viewing, and view HDTV and video-on-demand. According to a Microsoft press release, Robbie Bach, President of Microsoft’s Entertainment and Devices Division, had this to say:

“Both Xbox 360 and Microsoft TV IPTV Edition by themselves deliver unique and exciting entertainment experiences today, but IPTV on Xbox 360 is truly a solution that is greater than the sum of its parts and will enable even more exciting experiences to delight consumers, service providers, content providers and game developers alike. By integrating these industry-leading solutions, we are delivering on our promise to drive innovation and enable new connected entertainment experiences for consumers in a way that only Microsoft can.”

Microsoft continues to close in on its goal of being the digital-hub for the whole family. If this manages to take off, Microsoft will be in a very strong position as far as digital entertainment goes. This new service is expected to be available by the 2007 holiday season.

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