Rumors about Intel's cable TV box pop up; is it a threat to Xbox?

Rumors about Intel's plans to create a TV set-top box combined with some kind of cable TV-like service started up a few months ago. In February, Intel Vice President Erik Huggers confirmed that the company is working on both the hardware and the service for a launch sometime in 2013.

But can Intel really create a product that could challenge what current cable and satellite providers have, along with set-top boxes such as Microsoft's Xbox 360? A new report from Ad Age suggests that the answer to that question could be, "Yes."

The report, based on unnamed sources who have been among the few to test the service, claims that Intel's system will not have the typical "clunky" programming grid UI we see in other cable TV solutions. It will also have a cloud-based DVR, a way to view content on tablets, smartphones and other screens and more.

As far as the hardware, the report claims that the remote control will be much simpler to use than others that feature many buttons. The set-top box is said to be impressive in design, complete with a front-facing camera. It's even suppose to learn what TV shows a person watches so it can recommend new ones. The final result, according to the people who have seen the service, is one that is a "significant advance over any existing cable or satellite platform."

That could spell trouble for Microsoft, which has been turning its Xbox 360 game console into more of an entertainment multimedia box in the past few years. Microsoft just announced this week it was selling its Mediaroom IPTV service to Ericsson. Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president of marketing, strategy and business for Microsoft's Interactive Entertainment Business, said this will allow the company "to commit 100 percent of its focus on consumer TV strategy with Xbox."

Source: Ad Age | Image via Intel

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Q: Does this box from Intel play video games?
A: No.

Q: Is it merely just a set-top-box for broadcast TV and/or online VoD services.
A: Yes.

Q: Is it a threat to the XBox 360 or the next XBox that's yet to be announced by Microsoft?
A: No.

Q: Is it a threat to the PlayStation3 or the upcoming PlayStation4 recently announced by Sony?
A: No.

Q: Is it a threat to any present or future video games console or any other similar gaming device?
A: No.

Q: Is the writer of the article talking out of his hat when he suggests it's a potential threat to XBox?
A: Yes.

Considering Intel can't even make a bare bones PC that competes with anything on price, have a hard time thinking this will succeed.

If they offer the specs to Ericsson instead of rolling out a whole platform themselves, then maybe Mediaroom won't die off after all.

Interesting...

Well, one thing is for sure, I think if the xbox sells well their will be no need for this intel box. Why have a cable box, why have this or that, when you can have all of it on your xbox.

Sensationalist title; why is just xbox mentioned when clearly other competitors are attempting the same, and your article mentions, the cable companies themselves...The xbox is becoming much more of an entertainment hub but it does have its origins to back it up - GAMING.

Annoyances with Callaham writing, and many Neowin writer's title choices in general aside, competition is only good for consumers so go Intel, bring it to the table.

Intel? Jeez. That company has spectacularly failed at everything they've ever tried with the exception of making chips. They simply don't understand consumer markets. They'll fail again.

MeeGo, anyone?

Major Plonquer said,
Intel? Jeez. That company has spectacularly failed at everything they've ever tried with the exception of making chips. They simply don't understand consumer markets. They'll fail again.

MeeGo, anyone?


Sounds like this is what the next Xbox will be. But since Microsoft is using AMD, Intel has to put out a competitor. Just as Nvidia had to announce Shield because none of the systems are using Nvidia.

The problem for both is Xbox has AAA games and brand recognition.

UEFI, Thunderbolt, USB, CPUs, integrated GPUs (not everyone games, and the haswell one is looking quite nice).

Intel has succeeded in a lot more than just "chips."

-Razorfold said,
UEFI, Thunderbolt, USB, CPUs, integrated GPUs (not everyone games, and the haswell one is looking quite nice).

Intel has succeeded in a lot more than just "chips."


everything you just listed is essentially 'chips', doh!

-Razorfold said,
UEFI, Thunderbolt, USB, CPUs, integrated GPUs (not everyone games, and the haswell one is looking quite nice).

Intel has succeeded in a lot more than just "chips."

None of these are "consumer products". They are all sold through OEM channels using the OEM's brand, not Intel's. Intel have never succeeded in bringing an Intel branded product to any consumer market. Moreover, their software is truly bad.