Microsoft Expected to Unveil TV Service at E3

Dennis Faas's picture

It's rumored that Microsoft will unveil a subscription-based TV service for its Xbox 360 video game console at the upcoming Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) at Los Angeles' Convention Center.

Word of the possible unveiling comes from Winrumors, which suggests that Microsoft is currently in last-minute discussions to secure critical agreements giving the TV service its go-ahead. It's believed the subscription service would be called Xbox LIVE Diamond and would act like a "virtual cable operator." (Source:

Diamond Offers Remain Unclear

It's unclear precisely what that means, but there are two possibilities: 1) it allows current cable subscribers to use the Xbox service to interact with their Xbox Live friends while watching TV, or 2) something more elaborate, whereby certain cable channels can be accessed through Xbox Live.

That may mean one could subscribe to a channel of their choice (example: Food Network, Spike TV, etc) without having to pick up and use a cable box. This second option may appear in the form of a suite of channels (meaning that some desirable channels will no doubt be grouped with "fillers"), but we're hoping it's an "a la carte" system instead.

For its part, Microsoft is remaining mum on the subject. The only thing company reps would say when queried on the subject was: "We are excited to share our latest news at E3 during our news briefing on the morning of Monday, June 6, 2011, at the Galen Center on USC Campus in Los Angeles." (Source:

Xbox 360's Popularity Could Give Idea Boost

Some critics wonder if Microsoft's decision to enter an already crowded TV streaming market is a wise business move. Even search giant Google struggled when it introduced Google TV not too long ago.

Of course, Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Xbox Live platform provide a unique circumstance. Already both the system and its online database of on-demand TV shows, movies, and video games have proven exceptionally popular.

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