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Thursday, 11 April 2013 06:58

Xbox Next to offer full TV integration

Written by David Stellmack

Will hook up to your cable box

The expected high cost of the Xbox Next is rumored to be due to the fact that it will offer full TV integration support. Similar to what we saw with Google TV, the Xbox Next will apparently overlay its features and UI over the top of existing TV stations.

This makes the always-on requirement of the Xbox Next a little easier to understand, given its connection to your cable box. Microsoft looks to take the integration a lot farther than Google TV was able due to Microsoft’s relationship with content providers and cable companies.

Hints that the Xbox Next will offer DVR style functionality and use its Kinect capabilities to watch the eye movement of viewers to pause the playback has also been suggested. Our sources claim that it is unclear what the Xbox Next will offer as far as TV functionality, but it is said to go far beyond what Google TV offered and into areas that Google TV never got to exploit.

Microsoft may also be planning a stripped down version of the Xbox Next that costs much less and that would be targeted at only offering the TV functionality and some casual gaming support. This is said to be part of Microsoft’s master plan, but the low-cost version would not come out till the Xbox Next had been out about a year or so, as Microsoft would not want to dilute the market.

To us, all of this TV integration talk could be just that…talk. It could be nothing more than wishful thinking or something to throw us off the scent entirely. While we know that Microsoft would like to become more deeply entrenched in the living room and your television watching experience, it would not surprise us if this ends up as true. One thing we can tell you: our sources are pretty convinced of this.

David Stellmack

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