Download Movies and TV through Xbox Live

Written by Ryan Garside

November 7, 2006 | 10:54

Tags: #content #download #hddvd #live #movies #television

Companies: #microsoft

Microsoft is cramming its schedule full of releases in an attempt to divert attention away from its rivals, as the console 'Judgement Day' draws ever closer.

On top of the impending release of both the HD-DVD player and third person action game Gears of War the company has now announced that it will release movies and television shows through its Xbox Live Service.

The service, which is due to start on November 22nd, will include shows from CBS, MTV Networks, Paramount Pictures, TBS, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment with over 1,000 hours of programmes to get your hands on.

Taken from Engadget, here is the lowdown:

    • Microsoft has not yet disclosed pricing for downloads, but it will be in Microsoft points.
    • Movies will be "rental" only, TV for "purchase" only.
    • At launch there will be over 800 hours of SDTV, and 200 hours of HDTV.
    • You can only download content to your Xbox 360 drive -- not to an external drive.
    • Your "purchased" TV programs can be downloaded an infinite amount of times to an infinite amount of consoles; you may also play them back on friends' 360s with your removable drive.
    • Deleted TV shows can be re-downloaded later; HDTV shows can be re-downloaded in either HDTV or SD.
    • Movies can be watched an unlimited number of times the first 24 hours. Plays after that period will cost the same as the initial download, although the movie data isn't necessarily deleted. You can keep the movie data on your drive up to 14 days without re-downloading it.
    • Downloads are in VC-1 (aka WMVHD) at 720p, 6.8Mbps video with 5.1 surround.
    • An average HD movie download should be between 4-5GB, and a two hour SD movie would be 1.6GB.
    • An average 1 hour (44 min) HDTV download should be about 2.2GB, and an average 1/2 hour (22 min) HDTV download should be about 1GB. A 1 hour SDTV download should be about 600MB, and a 1/2 hour SDTV download should be about 300MB.
    • This service will not be available for MSN TV users, Vongo subscribers, or any other Microsoft partners. It is Xbox Live only.

So there we have it, a major coup for Xbox Live which willI have shows like Pimp My Ride and movies like Mission Impossible 3 available for their users to download at the end of November. The reaction of companies like Sony, and to a lesser extent Apple will be particularly interesting. Has Microsoft finally won the rights to your living room?

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