Microsoft announced the Xbox 360 will get instant on 1080p movies and TV with 5.1 surround sound. Additionally, the console will get access to popular services like Facebook and Last.fm.
The Best of the Internet, Custom-Made for Your TV
Groove, party or connect with a friend. Xbox LIVE, the world’s largest social network on TV, today announced that Facebook and Last.fm would be tailor-made for your TV, only on Xbox 360. Microsoft also announced Xbox LIVE Party for movies, which allows movie experiences to be shared — on the couch or across the country over Xbox LIVE in supported movies.
“We are always asking ourselves how to make the TV more social,” said John Schappert, corporate vice president of Interactive Entertainment LIVE, Software and Studios at Microsoft. “By bringing Facebook, Last.fm and Xbox LIVE Party for movies and TV shows to Xbox LIVE, we’re not only extending the walls of your living room beyond your home to your friends in different corners of the world, we’re creating the definitive social network, uniting more than 200 million people to share status updates, pictures, thoughts on music and the world’s best online gaming experience.”
The addition of Facebook to Xbox LIVE means friends are always connected, anytime, anywhere — from virtually any couch. But updating your status and sharing photos won’t be the only things you can do. Using Facebook Connect, you can share your greatest moments in gaming by posting updates and screenshots from supported games directly to Facebook. Don’t let your moment of glory fade away — make sure everyone sees it with Facebook Connect, starting with the future version of the premier EA SPORTS golf franchise “Tiger Woods PGA TOUR®.”
A first for TV, Last.fm,1 part of the CBS Interactive Music Group, will give Xbox LIVE subscribers access to millions of songs streaming through Xbox 360 to the best speakers in the house. Xbox LIVE subscribers will be able to create their own free, personalized radio stations and listen to them with friends in the living room or across the country.
Xbox 360 also solidified its place as one of the leading social entertainment networks by announcing Xbox LIVE Party for movies. Go to the cinema with your friends whether you are sitting on the same couch or in living rooms across the country. Starting this year, you can share a virtual theater, see your avatar (a virtual you) on the screen, all while you listen to each other laugh and cry at the movie through voice chat on Xbox LIVE. With movie parties, the only thing you can’t share is the popcorn.
1080p HD in an Instant
Continuing a pioneering effort that began with the introduction of the industry’s first video marketplace in November 2006 and broke new ground with the announcement of the first live TV straight from a gaming console last week in the U.K., Microsoft today announced that Xbox would deliver yet another first-to-the-world: instant on 1080p movies and TV with 5.1 surround sound — direct to consoles connected to compatible HD TVs through the Xbox LIVE social entertainment network.
Starting this fall, a broad selection of movies and TV shows from Zune video on Xbox 360 will be available to start and stream instantly, in the highest video quality and at the push of a button.2 No discs, no waiting for downloads and no delays. Get the selection of a video megastore, the best video clarity available and the convenience of on-demand, only on Xbox 360.
In addition, Microsoft announced it will more than double the number of markets where Xbox LIVE offers its TV shows and movies, growing from eight to 18, by adding Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. Xbox LIVE members in these markets will have access to instant on 1080p video. New Xbox LIVE Video Marketplace advancements also came for the U.S., U.K. and Ireland, specifically:
More choices with Netflix. Watch movies instantly streamed from Netflix.3 Browse and add selections to your instant Queue — right on your TV with your Xbox 360. Plus now with Xbox LIVE Party, you can watch and share supported movies with up to seven friends on Xbox LIVE. Debating between comedy and horror? Recommend your favorites to friends and see your virtual you as an avatar on the silver screen.
Live TV with BSkyB Ltd. The Xbox LIVE commitment to providing the best global entertainment gains momentum with its newest partner, Sky. Now, for the first time, watch live or on-demand TV from Sky on Xbox 360, including Sky Sports. Never miss a moment of your favorite live TV shows, sports, movies and family-friendly entertainment across the U.K. and Ireland on Xbox LIVE. You can even share your favorites with up to seven friends in an Xbox LIVE Party.