Microsoft’s previous experiments to get the Internet on consumers’ TV didn’t really pan out, but on November 17, the company’s finally going to realize its dream via the Xbox 360. That’s the date that Facebook, Twitter, Last.fm and “instant-on HD” video from Zune will all be available on Xbox 360.
In addition to these social networking features, Xbox Live will also debut “News and More,” a new section of the “Inside Xbox” channel that will make Xbox Live a media portal with streamed content from MSNBC and The New Yorker. Gee, never saw that whole MSNBC thing coming, did you?
An Xbox Live Gold account will be required to access these features. However, for a three-day period (Nov. 20-23), Xbox Live Silver members will be able to enjoy XBL Gold features for free, including Facebook, Twitter and Last.fm.
So, what are the specifics? Glad you asked:
- Facebook: Update your status to share what movie, game or entertainment you’re enjoying, connect with friends and view their Facebook stream, status updates and photos on the big screen. All these functions have been custom-built for the Xbox 360. You can also compare your Xbox Live and Facebook friends lists to see which of your friends are on Live.
- Twitter: Stay in the know by discovering, posting and replying to Tweets right on your Xbox 360. You can even view friend profiles, trends and conversations, or search to see who’s tweeting about your favorite game.
- Zune: Zune video on Xbox Live offers a full fidelity experience with instant on HD in 1080p and 5.1 channel surround sound. No waiting for downloads or buffering, it’s there at the press of a button. You can also share the experience with up to seven friends through voice chat and Avatar integration on the TV screen.
- Last.fm: Discover more music and explore endless personalized radio stations with Last.fm on Xbox 360. Skip, “ban” or “love” tracks to create your perfect mix, or peruse “Gamer Stations” with game-related types of music selected specifically for the gaming community (available in the U.S. and UK only).