Apparently Microsoft are in talks with media companies with a aim to bring pay-television services to the Xbox . I thought this was already happening with the Zune marketplace but this seems to be about bringing either full channels via the 360 or a la carte options. If they could work out the content details and offer TV shows over via Windows, Xbox and Windows Phone then they could have a very comprehensive service
The maker of the Windows operating system has proposed a range of possibilities in these early talks including creating a "virtual cable operator" delivered over the Internet for which users pay a monthly fee.
Other options include using the Xbox to authenticate existing cable subscribers to watch shows with enhanced interactivity similar to how pay TV operators have sought to do over the Web, said these people.
Microsoft is also exploring the possibility of creating content silos and selling more individual channels directly such as an HBO or Showtime. It already has Walt Disney Co’s (NYSE:DIS – News) ESPN on the XBox Live online service for example.
These people said a service may not arrive for another 12 months, but early discussions have been productive.
Ian Dixon is a Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional), founder of TheDigitalLifestyle.com tech site and producer of the weekly The Digital Lifestyle Show podcast. Ian has been writing and talking about Windows for over 10 years and has over 20 years in IT as an IT Manager. Ian has thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook and over 4 million views on his YouTube channel.