Microsoft Planning XBox TV Service

Television tech battle back on

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 30, 2010 2:43 AM CST

(Newser) – Microsoft is planning to leap back into the battle for American living rooms with a new TV service, sources tell Reuters. The company has held talks with TV networks about creating a TV service to be delivered through the XBox console, establishing a "virtual cable operator" that would charge a monthly fee for access and provide stiff competition for cable companies, the sources say.

Microsoft, which isn't expected to unveil its TV service for another year, is also reportedly looking into creating programing packages for customers, and using the XBox to make TV viewing more interactive. The plans would pit Microsoft against TV efforts from Google and Apple, although analysts note that having the "Trojan horse" console already in millions of homes could give Microsoft the edge.

-- FILE ** In a Nov. 9, 2005, file photo the Microsoft Xbox 360 is on display at the the annual Microsoft shareholder meeting in Bellevue Wash. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2005. Microsoft is cutting the price of the high-end Xbox 360 console by $100, matching Sony's PlayStation 3, which...
-- FILE ** In a Nov. 9, 2005, file photo the Microsoft Xbox 360 is on display at the the annual Microsoft shareholder meeting in Bellevue Wash. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2005. Microsoft is cutting the price...   (AP Photo/John Froschauer/fiole)
A security guard keep san eye on Microsoft's new Xbox 360 during a media briefing.
A security guard keep san eye on Microsoft's new Xbox 360 during a media briefing.   (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
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Microsoft now recognizes that Google is serious about getting into the living room. They want to prevent Google TV from getting a major beachhead in the home. - Tech analyst Rob Enderle

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