While the news comes from England, it will surely pave the way for American companies to follow. In news this past Tuesday, Britain’s largest pay-TV broadcaster is making 24 channels available over the Xbox 360 console without the need for a dish. The ability to watch paid-for-live channels via broadband is sure to shake up the satellite wars that currently exist. Subscribers to the Sky Player service, which costs £15 (approximately $30) per month and who are also members of Xbox Live can now watch various programs through their consoles.
Among American shows that English viewers can watch are Lost, House, and MTV. Apparently there has been a high demand for Sky Sports, a sort of ESPN of the non-American world. Subscribers have the ability to watch that channel as well but the price goes up. A downer in this is that there is no current streaming of HD since English broadband speeds are not fast enough.
The Xbox 360 is not only turning into a gaming console, but also a multimedia platform. With its update a month away bringing Facebook and FM radio, it is not shocking that a company has integrated satellite television to the powerful box. I’m sure that news has already spread and I’m sure that people and companies have already been working on this. From a venture capitalist position, this could be a great investment. People want their television and entertainment and with DirecTV and DISH Network constantly battling, it could be refreshing to see a third party come into the mix. As for the bandwith issue, ISPs will rectify that problem and probably force consumers to pay more for quicker connections. If it was affordable, I would no doubt upgrade my internet service in order to receive HD programming via satellite via Xbox.
Satellite television on Xbox would also eliminate the need for an extra digital box. Gone would be the days of dishes outside and getting those intermittent disruptions in signal. We should wait and see with anticipation what sort of effect this has on our domestic satellite television coverage.
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