Why Microsoft TV could crush Google TV

videogame sales slump further in august but xbox 360 is kingWith both Apple and Google now anxiously pawing at the door to consumer living rooms with products like Apple TV and Google TV, it should come as little surprise that Microsoft is apparently lumbering down from Redmond to poke its face in the doorway, too. Early reports suggest Microsoft is developing a paid television service that would use the Xbox 360 to pipe content to TVs. It may be just a sliver of a rumor at the moment, but the concept has legs. Here’s why a Microsoft-developed pay TV service could potentially bowl over Google TV.

Hardware

Logitech RevueThere were 18.6 million Xbox 360 consoles in the United States the last time Microsoft released numbers this time this year, and we’re willing to bet that number has seen a healthy increase since then (Microsoft claims 44.6 million worldwide, as of September 2010). Among the entire American population, that’s better than one in every 10 households, and if you’re in college, chances are you can find an Xbox 360 among your friends before you can find a toaster.

Microsoft doesn’t need to sell you a new box because you probably already own one.

If you don’t, it’s pretty affordable to get onboard. A Google TV box (the Logitech Revue being the only one, at the moment) will cost you $300. An Xbox 360 Slim will cost you $200, and if you really feel like skimping, you can pick up a refurbished Arcade model from Best Buy for $130. That’s almost Apple TV territory.

Inroads

Besides the fact that millions of Xbox 360 owners wouldn’t have to spend a dime for hardware to tap Microsoft’s TV service, slipstreaming onto an existing device has other benefits, too. The interface is already familiar, the box is already connected, and Microsoft can use updates to push the TV service in front of owners who might not otherwise seek it out.

Microsoft has already hammered out a template for video delivery on the Xbox 360, too. The latest fall update brought on-demand ESPN to the box, and Netflix streaming has been standard for over a year now. Together, they give Microsoft a technological testbed for streaming that should ensure the final product feels polished right out of the box, as opposed to the hokey beta feel of Google TV.

why microsoft tv could crush google espn xbox360 1

Licensing

Rather than partnering with major networks and premium content providers like HBO to offer content that other boxes couldn’t access, Google TV merely provided an interface for consumers to get at what was already there. Smart move in theory, bad move in execution. Within weeks of launch, ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox all cut off their free online streams to Google, Hulu had it blocked from the start, and what content remains is often fragmented and less than intuitive to access.

Microsoft, meanwhile, is apparently in talks to actually work with providers to deliver content, rather than merely acting as a conduit to deliver it. Besides the fact that working directly with providers will prevent content from being abruptly shut off, partnerships should also open up access to exclusive content, fresher content, more complete content, higher quality (1080p?) content, and hopefully, a more unified interface along the lines of what we’ve seen with iTunes on the Apple TV.

Gaming

Take-Two Interactive takes down another ‘GTA Online’ modder, seeks $150K

Take-Two Interactive and Rockstar Games have filed a lawsuit against the GTA Online modder behind the software named Elusive. The publisher is continuing its crackdown against GTA Online mods.
Home Theater

Cutting the cord? Let us help you find the best service for live TV streaming

There's a long list of live TV streaming services available to help you cut the cord and replace your traditional TV subscription. Each is different in important ways, and this guide will help you find the best one for you.
Home Theater

The seven best TVs you can buy right now, from budget to big screen

Looking for a new television? In an oversaturated market, buying power is at an all-time high, but you'll need to cut through the rough to find a diamond. We're here to help with our picks for the best TVs of 2018.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ streamer reportedly arrested after abusing wife while on Twitch

An Australian Fortnite streamer who goes by the name MrDeathMoth abused his pregnant wife while he was live on Twitch. An anonymous cybersecurity expert took matters into his own hands, resulting in the arrest of the streamer.
Deals

Miss Black Friday but still need an Xbox? Walmart has you covered

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have both come and gone, but you can still save some cash on a new Xbox One bundle at Walmart. Both the Xbox One S and the Xbox One X are on sale now.
Gaming

Relive Nintendo’s handheld golden age with the 25 best Game Boy Advance games

The Game Boy Advance was the swan song of the Game Boy era. It also happened to have a boatload of amazing games. We decided to countdown our 25 favorite GBA games. Check it out and let us know your favorites in the comments below!
Gaming

The Epic Games store is already luring indie studios away from Steam

The Epic Games Store is less than a week old, but it's already making waves among indie studios. Multiple studios have announced that their games will be timed exclusives on the Epic Games Store, with one studio forgoing Steam completely.
Gaming

The most common Nintendo 3DS problems, and how to fix them

The Nintendo 3DS has seen its fair share of issues since it launched in 2011, including poor battery life and fragile Circle Pads. Here are some of the most common, as well as the steps you can take to solve them.
Gaming

Bundle up for the huge ‘Monster Hunter: World’ expansion coming in 2019

Monster Hunter: World is getting a major expansion in fall 2019 called Iceborne. The expansion will be similar in scope as the Ultimate versions of previous Monster Hunter games, featuring new quests, monsters, weapons, and armor.
Gaming

How to keep a PS4 in your pocket with the PlayStation Mobile app

Sony built the PlayStation 4 with smartphone and mobile integration in mind. Take a look at our guide for connecting your smartphone or tablet to a PS4, so you can browse profiles, trophies, and other content directly on your mobile device.
Deals

Play ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ the best way with a Switch GameCube controller

If you're a longtime Super Smash Bros. player, then you know there's only one true way to play. Alongside the recent launch of the new 'Super Smash Bros. Ultimate,' Nintendo has brought back the iconic GameCube controller.
Gaming

Apple Mac users should take a bite out of these awesome games

Contrary to popular belief, there exists a bevy of popular A-list games compatible for Mac computers. Take a look at our picks for the best Mac games available for Apple fans.
Gaming

The hottest Nintendo Switch games you can get right now

The Nintendo Switch's lineup started off small, but games have steadily released as the console continues through its second year. Here are the best Nintendo Switch games available now, from Super Mario Odyssey to Fortnite.
Deals

Check out the best Green Monday deals for those last-minute gifts

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone, but that doesn't mean you've missed your chance of finding a great deal. We're talking about Green Monday, of course, and it falls on December 10.