Following an announcement during Microsoft president Bill Gates' CES Keynote in Las Vegas, the company officially announced details of its partnership with British Telecom to bring film and television content to the Xbox 360 over its proprietary internet protocol TV (IPTV) platform, Microsoft Mediaroom.
The partnership will enable any BT Broadband customer to use an Xbox 360 console to access the BT Vision service and its library of on-demand movies, television programming, sporting events, music videos and other digital content.
BT Vision customers with an Xbox 360 console will gain the option of accessing BT Vision from either the Xbox 360 console or a set-top-box. The service will be available to existing and future Xbox 360 console owners.
Microsoft says that the Mediaroom-enabled TV service on Xbox 360 will be integrated with Xbox Live, employing community-based features like voice chat, text and voice messaging, and Xbox Live Marketplace shopping while watching TV.
Microsoft is expected to offer a similar service to U.S. customers, following the announcement at CES that the company will also partner with Disney-ABC and MGM Studios for television shows like Lost, Gray's Anatomy and Ugly Betty, as well as films like Rocky, Dances With Wolves, and Terminator.
Said BT Vision CEO Dan Marks, “We are pleased to partner with Microsoft to deliver a truly compelling connected entertainment experience to our customers. For the first time consumers in the U.K. will be able to experience the advantages of an advanced TV service together with the benefits of next-generation gaming. Our aim is to provide BT Vision on multiple platforms— giving customers greater convenience, control and flexibility over what they watch, when they watch and how they watch TV. It also means that we are able to potentially expand our BT Vision customer base by tapping into the popularity of Xbox 360.”