Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Microsoft Releases New Xbox 360 Bundle, Brings Amazon
Instant Video On Board
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Microsoft today announced the Xbox 360 250GB 'Racing
Bundle', available at in mid-June, for a MSRP of US
$299. The company also brings an Amazon Instant Video
app to its Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers and is getting
ready for next week's E3 game show.
For $299, the new Xbox 360 bundle includes a 250 GB
Xbox 360 console, Microsoft's Forza Motorsport 4 game
and a Xbox 360 Wireless Speed Wheel. The
Amazon.com, and Microsoft also today introduced a new
Amazon Instant Video app for Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers.
Besides giving subscribers access to movies and TV
episodes on their Xbox 360 console, the app also offers
access to Prime Instant Video, a service with more than
17,000 movies and TV episodes available to Amazon's
Prime members at no additional cost. Xbox LIVE Gold
subscribers can find the free Amazon Instant Video app
in the Xbox LIVE Marketplace for Xbox 360.
The Amazon Instant Video app for Xbox 360 includes
the ability to browse and play videos with the Xbox 360
remote control or Kinect voice and gesture commands,
instant streaming of high-definition movies and TV
episodes and allows users to create a list of things
they want to watch and also switch from one device to
another. Users can start streaming a movie on Kindle
Fire, then pick up right where they left off on their
Xbox 360 console and avoid the frustration of having to
find their spot. Users can also access their purchases
from Amazon Instant Video on the Xbox 360 or any of
other devices enabled for Amazon Instant Video.
Microsoft is also getting ready for the upcoming E3 game
show held in Los Angeles in June 4, teasing us with some
information. At the company's official blog, Microsoft's
Yusuf Mehdi today outlined the future of Xbox.
"This year, Xbox becomes the premium entertainment
service for Microsoft," says Mehdi, revealing that the
company has sold 67 million consoles and generated more
than $56 billion at retail.
The promise of Xbox as the entertainment service for
Microsoft will come in different ways according to
Medhi. "Xbox will go beyond the box to reach all new
families of devices," he says. "Whether on your PC,
tablet, TV or phone, Xbox will be a gateway to the best
in music and video, your favorite games and instant
access to your friends."
Mehdi adds that Windows 8 will be an additional way for
Xbox content to reach everyone, but he also admits that
Microsoft understands entertainment is a multi-screen
experience and has ideas for making entertainment more
personal, interactive, and social "across the devices
"We've got ideas for making all the entertainment you
love more personal, interactive and social across the
devices you love - and on the phenomenal Windows 8
devices that are to come," he says.
He does not clarify thether whether this "multi-screen
experience" will translate to a true cross-platform
music and movie service remains to be seen.
"You'll see the first of that next week at E3 where we
will showcase the very best of Xbox, "he says. "We'll
unveil new games, show new ways to enjoy the
entertainment you love and, as always, we'll have a few
surprises to share."
These "surpises" could include the "Woodstock" Xbox
music service, designed to work in the browser and
across platforms, but for more, we'll have to wait until