What's this? Xbox is tearing it up in regards to streaming video moves lately? I wonder if they felt like they might be falling behind on the home entertainment front to Sony, who has that whole Sony Pictures division (which includes Columbia, Tri-Star and like a dozen other studios) and oh let's not forget that major music label which helps bolster their offerings. Well it seems that Microsoft will not be deterred and is pushing forward. First there was recent talk about what Xbox TV will be (Xbox TV Set for Holiday 2011, Not Exactly What We Expected) and now, a live streaming concert deal.
The Xbox TV thing is more like using the game console to hook into cable operators and act like a set-top box. I bet it won't allow for DVR though because that would take some cash out of some pockets.
No, this recent set of news is more likely the fruit of labors that have been ongoing for years. We have known for quite some time that Microsoft wants to be the central piece in the home entertainment puzzle, just like Sony wants their console to be. Nintendo, well, they are sort of off in their own little world there.
Xbox To Offer Live Streaming Concert Video
Today's news shows that Microsoft knows there is a war brewing in the living room of many connected homes for time, eyeballs, dollars and content exclusivity. So they fire a 20-lb cannon ball today at their competition with the announcement that they will be the exclusive HD live streaming partner on the Clear Channel Radio iHeartRadio Music Festival later this week. It will also stream on the iHeartRadio Facebook page, but not in HD it seems.
The two-day festival is set to feature a pretty big set of heavy hitters itself including Jeff Beck, Steven Tyler, Lady Gaga, Jay-Z, Coldplay, Kenny Chesney, The Black Eyed Peas, Steven Tyler, Alicia Keys, Jennifer Lopez, Carrie Underwood, Jane's Addiction, Nicki Minaj, John Mayer, David Guetta, Rascal Flatts, Bruno Mars, Sublime with Rome, Kelly Clarkson and special performances from Usher and Sting.
What is extremely fascinating is that this is all in celebration of a new digital radio service. They are using online video of a 2-day live event as a major piece of the marketing for a new digital radio service. Do you see the sheer power of online video? It's used to help promote the music industry. Sure, we all use music in our videos (if you don't, it might account for some low traffic numbers) but we don't really have a music event or song to market the video product, it's almost always the other way round. MTV and music videos rose up to sell records and CDs for the most part. Now online video is again leading the charge and being used as a marketing tool to sell digital radio.
Isn't that awesome?