Microsoft is reportedly working on a new subscription based video service for Xbox LIVE customers.
The Daily claims in an “exclusive” that the software giant is working on a video streaming subscription service. The service has been detailed several times before, known by its codename “Ventura.” The Daily’s report suggests that the service will be Zune-branded and a monthly subscription-based plan. The service is clearly a natural fit in Microsoft’s broader entertainment plans for the Xbox 360 later this year.
The software maker recently described Xbox as its entertainment strategy. “The vision for Xbox is straightforward,” said Microsoft’s Frank Shaw. “All of the entertainment you want. With the people you care about. Made easy.” Shaw highlighted the company’s ties with ESPN, Netflix and Hulu as evidence of Xbox’s entertainment strategy. Shaw also hinted that Microsoft will market Xbox as an entertainment brand. “You’ll see Xbox marketed more as an entertainment brand this year,” he said in May.
WinRumors understands that the company is working on an Xbox LIVE Diamond service which will include subscription based access to Live TV, video and music services. Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE Diamond TV service has been rumored for months. Codenamed Orapa, the service combines the company’s mediaroom IPTV services and Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE services. The software giant has trademarked Fusion Vault, Fusion Genesis and Fusion Sentient and also owns xboxfusion.com, possibly part of a new entertainment brand. Microsoft is also working on “Ventura”, a set of services being developed by the company’s Entertainment and Devices (E&D) unit. The services will focus on music and video discovery and consumption. “Ventura” also appears to run on Microsoft’s Azure cloud hosting. Little is known about “Ventura” and exactly how it fits into the company’s Zune music and video services.
Whichever way Microsoft decides to steer its entertainment strategy for Xbox, it’s clear that a subscription “all you can eat” package will be appealing for company executives and consumers alike.