Steve Ballmer reportedly visiting Hollywood to garner TV deals for Xbox One


Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer reportedly met with TV executives recently to secure original content for Xbox One.

When Microsoft announced its new Xbox One console a few weeks ago, it focused on the television capabilities of the device. Microsoft has since said it will concentrate on games at the E3 gaming conference next week, but the head of the company is reportedly visiting Hollywood to garner media partnerships at the same time.

According to a report by Deadline, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer met with television executives such as Les Moonves, CEO of CBS; and Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell, co-CEOs of talent agency William Morris Endeavor. The meeting was said to be orchestrated by Nancy Tellem, Microsoft's new head of entertainment and digital media; Tellem previously worked with Moonves when she was president of CBS.

The meetings were "part of [Microsoft's] effort to drum up exclusive content" for the Xbox One, Deadline reports, something the company has been known to be working toward even before its new console was announced.

Ballmer reportedly told the media executives that Microsoft "doesn't want to be a cable carrier," but rather wants to focus on unique methods of delivering sports, music, reality and scripted content. The comments likely refer to ways Microsoft could use its next-generation Kinect motion sensor and create paired apps to promote interactivity with original content. Microsoft showed an example of an NBA game working with a paired app that provided real-time stats during its Xbox One announcement.

The alleged comments show how Microsoft's stance on content has changed in just a year. Last June, Microsoft reportedly attempted to work with television networks to create a new tier of Xbox Live that would allow users to stream content similar to a cable network. Deals were never finalized, however, and Microsoft is believed to have abandoned the route because of difficulties with channel bundling – the process in which television studios require service providers to license its most popular channels along with less-popular channels.

Source: Deadline | Image via Microsoft

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Time and again, everywhere I go people keep underestimating this, thinking these deals are just for Xbox One. The reach they're offering is much bigger. Xbox 360 is not done evolving. Kinect can offer feedback that nothing can match.

Its good to see MS taking this seriously and realizing that offering media means much more that standard tv. I have seen people online up in arms over the idea that MS was focusing on traditional cable tv when its an 'outdated' medium, even though the truth was the opposite. Now here is even more evidence that MS knows the future of content delivery is not cable and are pushing to make that future happen. I would think media fans would applaud this since its an attempt to break the cable/satellite business model. I know I'd love to drop my plan if something like the X1 could cover my needs.

As usual, your getting the same trolling crowd that uses this report to bash the X1 as not focused on gaming, too focused on tv, etc, etc. As if to say MS is only capable of a singular focus and the X1 is only capable of a singular task. All current gen and next gen consoles do much more than game but that will not stop them from offering great gaming experiences. E3 will show that focus if MS is to be believed.

The internet seems to be full of those that are out to get products because of some bias against them. MS seems to be the poster child for such treatment. It even makes it difficult to find out real news when even blogger and 'journalists' seems eager to fan the flames.

It also illustrates how out of touch people online can be, even as they claim to be the trend setters. Most consumers are not reflected in the 'online community' so I guess that is

I would welcome this...
I only watch sports... CBS, FOX, ESPN 1 & 2
My kids only watch Disney, Nick, CN
My wife only watches whatever channel that has family guy on it (Fox, TBS, CN)

Anything else is on Netflix, Amazon and the World Wide Web....

If I can my handful of channels and cut ties w/Cox.... I'm all for it....

Heck.... If I can get NFL Sunday ticket on the Xbox 1... My kids are hit... Cable is gone...
Though I would either purchase all the crap they watch from Amazon or a T*rr*nt....

Showan said,
I would welcome this...
I only watch sports... CBS, FOX, ESPN 1 & 2
My kids only watch Disney, Nick, CN
My wife only watches whatever channel that has family guy on it (Fox, TBS, CN)

Anything else is on Netflix, Amazon and the World Wide Web....

If I can my handful of channels and cut ties w/Cox.... I'm all for it....

Heck.... If I can get NFL Sunday ticket on the Xbox 1... My kids are hit... Cable is gone...
Though I would either purchase all the crap they watch from Amazon or a T*rr*nt....


you still need your cable box

I'm talking if the deal above can be done and we can sign up for this content on the side or a platinum version of Xbox Live...

so the Xbox one will theoretically relieve the need for a gaming PC? now it will double or triple as an all around entertainment device?

I don't know.... when printers became all in ones in most cases.. when one feature broke, the whole darn thing wouldn't work

ChrisJ1968 said,
so the Xbox one will theoretically relieve the need for a gaming PC? now it will double or triple as an all around entertainment device?

I don't know.... when printers became all in ones in most cases.. when one feature broke, the whole darn thing wouldn't work

Because ball bearings, rollers, optics, belts, gears are all parts that will break in the XBox.

It's already a master of gaming and arguably a master at content consumption from video services. If they can close the gap with live tv than you're left with an all-in-one that is king.

I just hope they release xbox's that are for just content and live tv and not gaming for bedrooms etc. etc.

I think one of the worries is that it will just be a jack of all trades, master of none. A valid concern, but we're well off from being able to determine this.

Deogratias Saidi said,
tv tv tv tv
sport sport sport sport
call of duty call of duty call of duty call of duty call of duty

so sorry for your stuttering problem

Deogratias Saidi said,
tv tv tv tv
sport sport sport sport
call of duty call of duty call of duty call of duty call of duty

No, I think it's "Call of Doody".

Sony puts out a TV adapter for the PS3. It fails miserably.
Google makes GoogleTV, Nexus Q. It fails miserably.
Apple makes AppleTV. It sells OK, but to save face Apple calls it a hobby so they don't look poorly.

In each of those cases, people cheered those three companies. Now, with the Xbox One, Microsoft has a good chance of actually delivering TV to people's homes in a new, exiting way in addition to the purpose of the Xbox brand - to play games.

We cannot have Microsoft winning this battle, so we need to spread as much FUD as possible to stop it before it starts.

StephenBratz said,
Now, with the Xbox One, Microsoft has a good chance of actually delivering TV

Wishful thinking

It's called hypocrisy Stephen. And just following the dumb N4G hate crusade against the Xbox One without even contemplating what it all means, because they know if Xbox garners even more marketshare there might not even be a PlayStation after this coming generation. The Xbox One will be the all-in-one media consumption device and MS has the finance to back it up and make the correct deals.

StephenBratz said,
people cheered those three companies.

We don't have the same definition of cheering.

I clearly remember people cherring for the XBox 360 and not the PS3. Anyway in north america.

Thief000 said,
MS has the finance to back it up and make the correct deals.

The problem is not making deals. It's never been.

The problem is TV is a very local product. It's not like music or movies where yes you have local artists but people are perfectly happy with what USA has to offer for the most part.

You do realise here pretty much NOBODY actually watch Fox, NBC, ABC and such. We don't have ESPN. We don't have Syfy. People don't care all that much about american football. We have a local meteo channel. Local food channel. Local sports channel. Local news channel. Etc ... etc ... etc ...

It's the same for every countries the XBox One will be sold in.

Can Microsoft actually offer a product that is tailored for all those countries. In a perfect world yes. But you know, i know, everyone know that Microsoft wont bother. And even if Microsoft would actually bother it would be an extremely daunting task and borderline impossible.

Brony said,

Wishful thinking

The 360 has sold over 77 million devices. The best selling of the three above, the AppleTV, sold in the low teens. Put 77 million Xbox Ones in people's homes, and that is a lot of TV use. But I know, you will try your best to make sure that does not happen and to frighten people away.

Lap said,

We don't have the same definition of cheering.

I clearly remember people cherring for the XBox 360 and not the PS3. Anyway in north america.

Revise history much? The 360 was, around the world, mocked as being inferior to the PS3 in every way. Charts from analysts showed the 360 losing the market after the second year, and the PS3 doubling and tripling the 360's sales. We were told the 360 was a failure from the PPC processor being no match to the CELL, to the multimedia capabilities of the PS3 made the 360 look like a simple game machine. Of course, now that the Xbox One has the better multimedia support, that will supposedly be Microsoft's downfall.

Besides, I was writing about how people cheered the addon for the PS3 for TV. At least outside of NA, since it was not shipped here. But remember, it is big, bad Microsoft doesn't care about the entire world.

CaptainBeno said,
tv tv tv , o it it also plays games . But tv TV TV TV

New XboxTV one coming soon

Cause it won't be able to play games right?

Brony said,

Wishful thinking
If they can leverage the IP built into Media Center for Network Tuners and/or have a decent interface for controlling set top boxes a la Tivo, you better believe the have a chance. I'd love for them to consume network tuners... that would be epic.

StephenBratz said,
Sony puts out a TV adapter for the PS3. It fails miserably.
Google makes GoogleTV, Nexus Q. It fails miserably.
Apple makes AppleTV. It sells OK, but to save face Apple calls it a hobby so they don't look poorly.
In each of those cases, people cheered those three companies. Now, with the Xbox One, Microsoft has a good chance of actually delivering TV to people's homes in a new, exiting way in addition to the purpose of the Xbox brand - to play games.

We cannot have Microsoft winning this battle, so we need to spread as much FUD as possible to stop it before it starts.


i know that

StephenBratz said,

The 360 has sold over 77 million devices. The best selling of the three above, the AppleTV, sold in the low teens. Put 77 million Xbox Ones in people's homes, and that is a lot of TV use. But I know, you will try your best to make sure that does not happen and to frighten people away.

Yes but now MS is doing a re-boot with Xbox One that is not compatible with the older Xbox.

StephenBratz said,

We cannot have Microsoft winning this battle, so we need to spread as much FUD as possible to stop it before it starts.

MS could have dominated this segment many years ago when they launched Media Center. Unfortunately, maybe because of MS "lesser child" complex, maybe because internal power struggles, we might never know they first crippled and finally killed the project. First the OS was offers only with specific PCs and was not available as a standalone OS, then they bent to Cables companies and crippled its abilities, cards able to replace the top boxes were never widely available and the company never tried to push the concept Worldwide. Note that this happened way before companies like Sky were popular therefore it was a huge missed opportunity.
No need for whining about conspiracy theories: like Cronos MS ate its own child......

Fritzly said,

MS could have dominated this segment many years ago when they launched Media Center. Unfortunately, maybe because of MS "lesser child" complex, maybe because internal power struggles, we might never know they first crippled and finally killed the project. First the OS was offers only with specific PCs and was not available as a standalone OS, then they bent to Cables companies and crippled its abilities, cards able to replace the top boxes were never widely available and the company never tried to push the concept Worldwide. Note that this happened way before companies like Sky were popular therefore it was a huge missed opportunity.
No need for whining about conspiracy theories: like Cronos MS ate its own child......


The biggest problem was CableCards device would only be allowed on licensed *systems*. When it was allowed for the CableCard to workin any card (Ceton/HD HomeRuns). It started moving. OEM's had already been burned and it was left to hobbyists. I run a Ceton + an HD Home run at my house off of Cox Cable. It is an amazing experience with Win7 and WMC. I really hope Xbox takes the live tv experience in the xbox utilizing either their own cable card hardware or consuming from a network tuner like HD or Ceton.

StephenBratz said,
Besides, I was writing about how people cheered the addon for the PS3 for TV. At least outside of NA, since it was not shipped here. But remember, it is big, bad Microsoft doesn't care about the entire world.

That's because one is an addon and the other isn't. I can't imagine people around the world to be thrilled about all these features with a big asterisk next to them saying "* U.S. only".

Also, I love the idea that's spreading where people act like the entire worldwide web is against Microsoft and all pro-Sony, just because they don't like the news that's leaking out. I'm honestly at a loss for words here, especially when the bad news and speculation is posted on sites like Xbox Magazine. Of course, we all know those guys are a bunch of Sony fanboys as well.

Fritzly said,

No need for whining about conspiracy theories: like Cronos MS ate its own child......

Love the analogy!

MrHumpty said,
Cause it won't be able to play games right?

Duh, no one can play games AND watch TV. I mean ... you could, but it isn't done.

Because the XB1 is obviously a TV box, it cannot also be a game box.

Or something. I guess. The Internet hate parade has to get out in front of every new MS product, for some reason.

Brony said,

Yes but now MS is doing a re-boot with Xbox One that is not compatible with the older Xbox.

And Sony has done a reboot with PS4 that is not compatible with the older PS3. Of course, when PS3 launched it was better than the 360 because it had native rather than emulated backcompat. But then the PS3 (post 60/20GB models) not shipping with backcompat meant it was better than the 360 because, oh, I forget the reason why it was better, but it was some contrived excuse that made no sense. But now that the PS4 will not have compat, and the XBox One will not have compat, then PS4 is great because it does not have it while it is the end of the Xbox One because it does not have it.

In other words, no matter what crap Sony throws at you, it is great, but if Microsoft does exactly the same thing, then they are done, finished, DOA, other meaningless catch phrase that is the MS hater's favorite word of the day.

CaptainBeno said,
tv tv tv , o it it also plays games . But tv TV TV TV

New XboxTV one coming soon

Right, coz a next-gen product announcement should be about all the retained prev-gen features instead of the new ones (TV and stuff).

Like "This gaming console can play games just like it could previously! Let's talk about it for 2 hours! Let us show you AGAIN what you've been using in the past decade!" Is that what would've made you happy? Sounds freaking exciting, huh?

Like seriously, do you have any clue at all what's a product announcement about? Apparently not.