Ultimately, Microsoft will want to simplify the process by taking a home computer out of the equation. Right now customers have the ability to directly download a variety of movie trailers and game demos which has served as a proof-of-concept, both as a technical demonstration and a demonstration of consumer acceptance: 70 million pieces of content downloaded.The next obvious step is to monetize by renting movie downloads directly to the 360.
And here we are:
On Nov. 22, Microsoft will begin offering movies and television on demand through its Xbox Live service. The four million Xbox Live subscribers, including those who use a free barebones service, will have access to movies from the Paramount and Warner Bros.studios, including Mission: Impossible 3 and Superman Returns. They’ll also be able to download TV shows from CBS and MTV such as various flavors of the CSI franchise and South Park. What’s more, since the Xbox 360 can handle high-definition content, many of the available programs will be in high-def as well.
Obviously the Playstation3 (Sony is a movie studio) and Apple iTV are on the way and will feature similar TV-based VOD functionality at some point, but Microsoft gets here first and therefore gets my cash. Anyone interested in a lightly used Moviebeam?