Verizon’s Xbox TV service will be made available next month with 26 channels at launch.
The FiOS TV application will be made available shortly after Microsoft’s Xbox 360 fall dashboard update goes available on December 6. The application will include 26 channels and Verizon plans to add more in future. Xbox LIVE gold customers who subscribe to both FiOS TV and Internet will be able to view the channels as part of a deal with Microsoft. New customers will be able to sign-up to a special deal. The deal includes FiOS TV, FiOS 35/35 Mbps Internet service and Verizon voice service, starting at $89.99 a month. In addition, customers will also get 12-month Xbox LIVE Gold Membership and the “Xbox Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” game. The deal is available until January 21 at Verizon’s Xbox site.
“Joining forces with Microsoft and Xbox, we are breaking the boundaries between TV and gaming, and furthering the borderless lifestyle Verizon customers enjoy with our new offers and services,” said Eric Bruno, vice president of consumer and mass business product management for Verizon. “We are putting the controls in our customers’ hands, and giving them the ability to watch TV on another dynamic device that they can control with voice and gesture commands.”
Microsoft announced in October that it plans to offer a live TV experience with Xbox LIVE. The software giant has partnered with nearly 40 content providers to offer live TV services across the world. Microsoft is planning to make the TV channels available to Xbox LIVE gold subscribers and some partners will integrate Kinect experiences with their TV channels. Microsoft’s fall 2011 dashboard update will enable Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE TV service. The dashboard update will also bring Microsoft’s Metro style interface to the Xbox. Microsoft is also preparing to include YouTube and Bing on the Xbox. Bing users will be able to use Kinect’s voice recognition feature to search for movies, music and other content on their consoles. The new dashboard will also enable Microsoft’s upcoming Windows Phone integration with Xbox, see a video demonstration here. Microsoft plans to make its dashboard update available on December 6 for all Xbox 360 customers.