We’ve known that this was coming, but today it has been consummated: Verizon is bringing a ‘FiOS TV-powered entertainment experience’ to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console. Previous rumors included a similar deal landing soon with Comcast, which we anticipate being announced shortly.
Verizon has prepared an application for the Xbox that will allow its FiOS TV and Internet customers who are also Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers to view its television offerings on Microsoft’s console. The application itself has been designed to function with the Kinect, and will allow for full use sans a controller.
Content that will be be available is described as follows: A ‘selection’ of ‘popular’ content in high definition. It is, however, described as ‘multichannel.’
The press release on the matter called the partnership “an important expansion of the breadth of entertainment available on Xbox 360 and the latest move by Verizon to break down old technology barriers and provide customers the freedom of a borderless lifestyle where they can connect with what they love on all their favorite devices.” This can be read as follows: A competitive advantage for Verizon, and Microsoft continuing its campaign to mold the Xbox line away from being strictly a gaming platform, to a multimedia device that every family would want.
It’s an ambitious move, but with content deals such as this, and the coming agreement with Comcast, Microsoft just might pull it off. We have known of Microsoft’s plans for TV on the Xbox since E3, showing how long it has taken Microsoft to formalize content deals such as this.
No formal date for the release of this partnership has been announced. TNW Microsoft would estimate that it is likely that the deal will be in the hands of consumers before the holiday season, so that both companies can use it as a weapon to drive sales. We’ll bring you the news when the similar Comcast deal completes.