Xbox Live services to go free from April 19-23
In an attempt to get some more users hooked on its premium Xbox Live subscription service, Microsoft will offer it for free for five days, commencing on Thursday, April 19, and running until Monday, April 23. Partners like Hulu Plus, Netflix, and EPIX will also open their doors for free during the same time period. Depending on where users are, however, they will get various amounts of free app access during those five days.
Roku branches out to UK in earnest
Roku's international plans became real Friday after it began UK and Ireland. The Roku LT and Roku 2 XS are now available for £50 and £100 respectively (60 and 120 euros). British customers are simultaneously getting BBC iPlayer to catch up on the past one to two weeks of TV shows.
First Xbox Live UFC fight plagued with problems
Microsoft's live UFC app for the Xbox that launched in December suffered a number of hiccups when trying to stream UFC 141 on December 30, BitMob's Dan Hsu reported. Microsoft sent out 30,000 promotional passes for Xbox Live members to try out the app, which likely led to the technical issues many suffered with the app not loading. Other issues included resetting, crashing, moving to an earlier point in the fight with no ability to fast forward to live broadcasting, buffering, stutteringl and switching between standard, high or very low resolutions.
Xbox 360 gets definitive fall 2011 UI update time
Microsoft on Tuesday narrowed down a firm date for its fall 2011 Xbox 360 Dashboard. The Windows Phone-derived revamp should go live on December 6, about three weeks after beta testing began. The update is expected to go live worldwide, although not every feature will follow suit due to the need for local deals.
Xbox 360 fall 2011 Dashboard gets early testing
On cue, Microsoft has started up its Xbox Live Public Preview for the fall 2011 Xbox 360 Dashboard. Gamers who sign in with a Windows Live ID and register for Microsoft Connect should be entered into the running to be included in the public phase of testing in the last few weeks before the official launch. Access isn't guaranteed, although Microsoft hasn't said what if anything affects a user's chances.
UFC starts on Xbox as ATT U-verse clamps down
Microsoft finished off the week with word that its promised live UFC games on the Xbox 360 would go live on December 1. Along with on-demand clips, it will give viewers the option of pay-per-view live fights much like they would on the web or regular TV. The first live event should be UFC 140 in Toronto with Jon Jones and Lyoto Machida.
Xbox 360 live TV goes available worldwide
Microsoft as repeatedly rumored has kicked off its Xbox 360 live TV option. Cable and fiber TV providers such as AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, as well as individual TV stations such as Bravo, Epix, HBO, and SyFy, are all promising apps for the new Xbox Dashboard to watch TV online. Most if not all of the services will require that viewers authenticate to get access and will still need to have traditional TV.
Xbox 360 Comcast and Verizon deal
Microsoft's Xbox 360 live TV option is being unveiled on Wednesday, a late-breaking scoop identified. As expected, providers like Comcast and Verizon will let users pipe video directly to the Xbox, either from the cable itself or through the Internet, AllThingsD found. Viewers will have to authenticate like they do for HBO Go or other cable-owned services, though, as legacy carriers try to shelter themselves from cord-cutting.
Zune subscription videos said coming to Xbox, WP7
Microsoft is planning a subscription video service that would go beyond the live Xbox TV it promised during its E3 keynote, insiders uncovered Friday. The service mentioned to The Daily would be badged as a Zune service much like the existing pay-per-title store and compete with one of Microsoft's frequent partners, Netflix. The service would "most likely" not be locked to the Xbox and would show up on Windows Phone 7 and Windows PCs.
Microsoft shows WP7-based Xbox dash and
Microsoft at its E3 keynote planned a major overhaul of the Xbox 360 Dashboard to focus more heavily on media and compete with hubs like the Apple TV. The new Xbox experience now adds live TV and will let users see real-time streaming video. Few details are available, although live UFC fights will be available separately as a feature.