Microsoft may be looking to launch a TV channel for Xbox LIVE. Reports suggest that Microsoft has been in active discussions with former News Corp President Peter Chernin about launching a full channel’s worth of content that would be available exclusively to Xbox LIVE subscribers. The channel would feature original shows and syndicated content.
This could be an interesting prospect, and it certainly explains the rumors from last week regarding Microsoft’s interest in Conan O’Brien. Delivering a whole channels worth of content is expensive though, and it sounds like those expenses could be passed on to consumers. Bloomberg reports Chernin suggested raising the current monthly Xbox LIVE subscription fee by $1 or $2 to offset programming costs.
Xbox LIVE is the current feature leader among gaming networks, but Sony’s PlayStation Network (PSN) continues to improve and is free. Raising the subscription price for a service that some already feel has free equivalents is sure to ruffle some feathers.
Video on demand has been a staple of the Xbox LIVE service for years at this point, so launching a TV channel would also seem to send mixed messages about Microsoft’s approach to content delivery on the platform.