There’s a small event going on right now in Los Angeles called the E3 Media and Business Summit, which is the place where Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo, as well as a host of games developers unveil plans for the next year.
Today was the first day, and Microsoft was the first of the big three to show its hand. And one of the announcements means that Xbox 360 owners will soon be getting more access to online movie downloads.
This will be coming from Netflix, the online movie rental company, which is teaming up with Microsoft to allow Netflix subscribers, who also own an Xbox 360, to have access to its extensive catalogue through their consoles.
Free To Existing Subscribers
According to Reuters, the service will be launching in the Autumn, and is likely to come as part of a software upgrade. The brilliant news is that the service will be free to Netflix subscribers who also hold Xbox 360 Live Gold memberships. Which is likely to be a fair portion of the 10 million Xbox 360 owners out there.
Xbox 360 owners will be able to access the 10,000 titles, made up of both episodes of popular television series, and movies currently available as part of the 2007 launched Netflix ‘Watch Instantly’ feature.
Rumours surrounding some kind of partnership between the two companies have been rife over recent months, but until today, nothing official had been announced.
In Addition To Roku and LG Partnerships
This latest move by Netflix follows on from earlier partnerships with Roku and LG, both of whom are creating cheap set-top-boxes with the express intent of providing a living room alternative for people to download or watch Netflix content.
Xbox On Top, Sony To Follow?
This latest deal means Xbox 360 owners get even more online video offerings than before, with original programming already rumoured to be on the way, and a video service available through Xbox Live.
Sony has its E3 press conference on Wednesday, and it’ll be interesting to see whether Playstation 3 owners get any similar announcements. There have already been rumours of a video download service coming, so now we just need the details filling in.