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Pachter: Xbox One Subsidized by Cable Companies is “Absolutely Gonna Happen”, Coming Next Christmas

There have been some theories floating around about the Xbox One being designed with such a strong focus on TV as some sort of Troy horse to secure a place in many families' living room by being subsidized by cable companies, enticing customers with a much lower entry price.

According to industry analyst and crystal ball holder extraordinaire Michael Pachter that's definitely going to happen.

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MorePowerOfGreen981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

Hopefully this "Troy horse" is as successful as DVD and Blu-Ray were on PlayStation.

Septic981d ago

Trojan Horse*

And this is different to the DVD and Blu-Ray support on PS consoles. Cable companies subsidising a games console with very strong TV functionality is a first.

dedicatedtogamers981d ago

This is going to be one of those "In Certain Regions" sort of things.

North America, Western Europe...and that's about it. Pacther has been singing this "subsidized console" stuff since late 2011. It hasn't happened yet. I imagine it'll be a while before it does eventually happen.

gaffyh981d ago

@dedicatedtogamers - That's true, plus Sony is already kinda doing this with subsidized internet rather than cable (Virgin Media in the UK for example), so I can see them jumping on this as well, because MS has given them too much warning if it's going to happen next christmas.

LOGICWINS981d ago

"North America, Western Europe...and that's about it."

Perfect, thats where I live :)

If the XB1 does subsidized pricing, thats great. More money to save for me. Hopefully this is done with Time Warner.

P0werVR981d ago

hmmmm...a cable box or a box that plays games AND TV?! I'll take the latter. Let's see how cable companies will provide subscriptions through apps.

Anon1974981d ago

If the Xbox one replaced your cable box, they might have something, but as it stands now the Xbox just seems to be another layer between you and the cable box and television and who needs that. Just my opinion. Personally, I find even the cable box an annoyance and wish they could just standardize and build it into TV's or something. The more devices between myself and what I want to do, the poorer the experience.

theshonen8899981d ago

I was under the impression that Xbox One wasn't a cable box but rather connects TO a cable box and overlays relevant information and acts as a remote. I haven't had cable in years so I don't know much about how the technology has changed, but cable boxes run through coaxial, not HDMI, am I right? If that's the case then there's absolutely no incentive for cable companies to subsidize an Xbox One.

TheGreatAndPowerful981d ago

So when your hardware doesn't sell well then subsidize it?

MS you learned a very important lesson here, never f*** with a consumer's rights.

Utalkin2me981d ago

@LOGICWINS

Really? Time Warner Cable are you serious. Has to be the worst company in this area of cable/tv/internet.

rainslacker981d ago

I don't see it happening for two reasons.

1. Xbox offers a way to watch content that the cable providers want to provide through their programming, so they can profit off it. Things like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Streaming music services, etc, are all things that the cable companies want to provide, and by doing so they derive money from the content providers. Those channels aren't going to be too happy if the cable company freely provides a secondary content service which will steal away their veiwers, thus their advertising revenue.

2. All that stuff is behind a paywall. Why would the cable company share money with MS when they can just charge the customers a premium to get the content in the first place. The cable companies are about as greedy as they come, making MS look like saints.

JOHN_DOH981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

@theshonen8899
I connect my cable box to my tv with hdmi, but the box gets the signal from a coax cable.

@P0werVR
but don't you still need a cable box?

indysurfn981d ago

xboxone does not even have a coaxial input. That means there would need to be a special adaptor to connect to exboxone OR you will still need to have a cable box AND a xbox. HELLO, why would I want that? There most likelybe a FEE to add to my bill to subsidize the xbone and a contract. Why would I do that? My bill is too high already!

The cable company says the cable box is free. But there is a fee for having the 'cable box connected' Which to me means it is not free

I don't care how you explain the charges, or name them they still cost me. This same kind of thing will happen for the xbone. Nothing is free from Micoroshaft, or the cable companies.

Here comes the 3 year contracts, you WILL pay a lot for this muffler!

bicfitness981d ago

Won't happen. Cable companies have their own media-boxes to sell. There is no incentive for them to do this or to encourage another ecosystem (Xbox Live). People keep saying this is a great idea but they forget how insular and monopolistic cable companies are. I imagine MS courted them back when these rumors started years ago and had the door slammed in their face.

yellowgerbil981d ago

what is even better is the rumored Playstation tv and viacom deal with sony that would negate the need for cable companies all together.
Where I live Comcast has a monopoly, glad to see sony will put these awful companies, charging 60$ a month for the most bare bones selection, in their places

+ Show (10) more repliesLast reply 981d ago
Ron_Danger981d ago

* Trojan Horse

Read a book

SilentNegotiator981d ago

Specifically something by Homer, I presume?

Prime157981d ago

He put it in quotes for a reason. I suppose you should heed your own advice.

rainhell77981d ago

Blue-Ray successful? More like a dying format for videos. But very welcomed for a disk with so much GBs for games.

AsimLeonheart981d ago

Dying?? Why do you consider it dying if every HD movie is released on Bluray. If Bluray is dying then how will the studios release their HD and 4K movies in the future? Is there a substitute or alternative available that you can kindly let us know about? Please do not say digital downloads because we have been hearing that for the past 5 years and it still has not happened. We will not be downloading and storing 100GB 4K movies any time in the near future. There is no better substitute for Bluray right now and they will not die unless there is one.

redwin981d ago

I but my movie digital and it's stored in the cloud, I can retrieve it in my cell phone, tablet or computer. I can buy it from iTunes or MS. I can also subscribe to redbox digital. Yes, blue ray is dead. Btw, must of the movies in redbox are in DVD format .

MightyNoX981d ago

@Asim : I think he means because streaming has become more and more popular.

Debaitable981d ago

With data caps, speed throttling and slow Internet speeds Blu-Ray is still better than digital alternatives for HD movies. Well at least for us in America.

AndrewLB981d ago

Yea. I guess it's dead to people who have low end walmart HDTV's with built in speakers who thinks streaming HD is as good as blu-ray. lol. It's like comparing PS3 to PS4. It's going to be a few more years before broadband speeds get to where they need to be here in the US for proper video/audio streaming. It wont be until the Cable companies make the big switch to sending individual cable channels to each cable box once the channel is selected. That's going to to free up HUGE amounts of bandwidth since the cable company wont have to broadcast ALL channels to all locations.

rainslacker981d ago

Yeah, that's why it fills up so much valuable retail shelf space, and gets prominent places on new releases at the front of every big store's displays.

Streaming is still a long ways off from being comparable to Blu-Ray. For the time being it is good enough, and offers convenience. But there will always be people that want to own the content they spend money on.

Oh_Yeah981d ago

@debaitable

Comcast comcast comcast. If you live in america get it! They cover almost the whole country, no data caps and have high speeds. Crushes Verizon and the others. I regularly hear friends complaining about their internet DL speeds...and they pay about the same price. Xfinity is where its at.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 981d ago
Blaze929981d ago

Hmm Comcast/Xfinity & Verizon giving out Xbox Ones with TV bundle packages, maybe 2 year contract for less than $300 or maybe even free? - that would be a very good look.

solar981d ago

if this happens it is going to be huge for MS.

buynit981d ago

Very huge.. And they have the nfl license!

All i know is that i have great cable internet with no caps.. Im ready to take full advantage of the "tv tv tv" feature.. I feel bad for those that cant experience it but it wouldnt be fair to make those that have the capability wait for the whole world catch up..

You know its kind of like that "everything holds the playstation back" saying...

B-radical981d ago

Hope xbox is able to use foxtel again :)

Eddie20101981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

Maybe I'm wrong, but why would the cable companies subsidized a console that is not needed to watch cable.

It's doesn't do cable without hooking a cable box to it. Basically the Xbox One is just a pass thru box for the cable box (satellite box) you still have two devices that have to be turned on. What does the Xbox One provide for cable viewing that a cable box doesn't already do. It doesn't really do anything to enhance cable or satellite viewing. So why in the world would you buy an Xbox One just for minimal TV capabilities. Unless you want to use the kinect to yell at your TV, because honestly pushing button is a lot easier than using voice commands to change channels.

xtremeimport981d ago

I think its different from DVD and bluray in PS consoles because, you probably already have cable in your house.

Now, I dont doubt this is a great idea and can see it becoming something. But sometimes I just want to watch tv. not have to worry about sharing everything i'm doing with my "friends". Of course the option to have it and not use it is nice, but I'm also curious to how useful it'll be to me in Canada.

deecee33981d ago

I wonder how true this could turn out to be. On one hand, streaming video services are on the rise, and the Xbox One is not a cable box per se. On the other, the Xbox One could be used to access streaming video services (though your cable/ISP may not be super thrilled about hosting both that and the increasing Netflix traffic out there), and there's been talk of a more subscription based pricing model for consoles for some time.

I'm all for that, but it could all turn to sh*t if Time Warner and other greedy cable giants get to decide the business plan. These are the same guys that won't offer us an A la carte cable package. They need to show us it's not just another way to get us to pay for a bunch of sh*t we won't watch and don't care about to get what we actually want.

harrisk954980d ago (Edited 980d ago )

The same Michael Pachter who predicted the Wii HD back in 2008? Honestly, this one would make sense except for the fact (as many people have commented), the current XB1 does not have an input for coaxial cable. Which means that people will still have to have a converter box to plug the XB1 into.

Also, why would the cable companies subsidize these things when they are all coming out with their own boxes that have the same functionality (minus games). I just got the X1 from Comcast. While the current iteration of the X1 does not have many of the promised features, it will be getting voice control, smart search, personalized picks, app integration (including Facebook, Twitter, sports apps, movie apps, etc.). The XB1 would be directly competing with Comcast's own box and Comcast is the largest cable provider in the US. The cable companies have to offer these types of smart boxes to keep relevant as many start to move away from cable. Not to mention all of the smart TVs that have many of the same features (Samsung, LG, Panasonic are all providing similar smart TV solutions)...

Bottom line is that while it seems like a good idea, MS would have to redesign the XB1 to add a coaxial input and not conflict with the cable companies' own offerings. Plus, all of the apps on XB1 are behind a pay wall and the cable companies do not get a piece of LIVE (unless MS cuts them in for a percentage, which doesn't seem likely). Where is the incentive? It's not like you can "pick" your cable company! You are captive to your local cable provider (the other options besides cable is if you go with AT&T Uverse, Dish or DirecTV, or some other IP-based service).

Final point, Sony is currently in negotiations to actually offer direct feeds of content from actual content providers. They inked the deal with Viacom and more deals are in the pipeline. That seems like a better solution for a console as there is not need for the cable box. The cable box is bypassed in the PS4 and you need the cable box to use the television features on the XB1. Now, PS4 does not have the same emphasis on these television features, but, again, a lot of things are in the pipeline to be added later.

+ Show (8) more repliesLast reply 980d ago
Excalibur981d ago

I guess I must be dumb because I don't understand what this article is trying to say, are they saying cable companies will use Xbox Ones instead of their own cable boxes?

or cable companies will pay Microsoft for their cable box to work with the Xbox One?

I don't see either one happening if that is the case.

JoelT981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

It's saying that Pachter thinks cable companies will eat the upfront cost of the console for potential subscribers. Kind of like when a cell phone carrier "gives" you a cell phone on contract (or provides it at a much lower cost). It would make sense given Xbox One's approach to TV.

JessiePinkmanYo981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

JoelT is right, and it may or may not be such a good idea. Cable companies are losing business with everyone flocking to Netflix and Hulu, so I'm sure they're chomping on the bit for a fresh idea to get customers back.

Edit-thinking about it, Sony tried this route with the Vita in its infancy with AT&T and I remember the infamous booing at the announcement of AT&T being the provider. Does AT&T still provide service for Vita?

Abriael981d ago

I think Sony actually still does it in some Euro countries for the Vita with Vodafone.

kewlkat007981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

The cable companies are in a flux right now an dI like it. It's stirring things up because of the "streaming content providers" that is now accessible on so many different hardwares.

Then again, Google, Apple, now Microsoft are fighting for the same space.

It makes sense that the Xbox one can sneak into the living rooms with its capabilities, although it's somewhat of a Hack with Xbl media guide..etc as Microsoft explained it. Having millions of consoles in homes is the first step. Bundling with Cable services might be another.

I have used Google TV but the hardware was too slow. I just heard Apple's Apple tv service will be delayed because of content deals with the media conglomerates fell through.

iamnsuperman981d ago

How is this different from having a promotional offer with a free console. The Xbox One has some interesting TV functions but it can't compete with a standard DVR/cable box. I don't see this ever happening except for the upper bundles as you still need the box anyway.

Different from phones as the phone makes the system work. You don't need an Xbox One to watch TV (huge difference here)

GraveLord981d ago

Not gonna happen since these cable companies are pushing their own boxes.

Why pay Microsoft? Why eat the cost?
If someone wants cable, they already have it.

Joe913981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

If this is going to happen MS needs to hurry up and make it happen. Apple just bought the company that co-founded the tech from Kinect so soon Apple will be able to do these type of things if they make an Apple TV device for two to three hundred bucks then MS is dead no one will buy a Xbox one if Apple has something that does the same thing for two to three hundred less plus all your apple stuff will work with it. Like I said before MS need to break this down get a Kinect less Xbox one out there as well as a Roku type device using the Kinect like the Xbox one does now. It can do some kool things but for $500 not worth it. For gamers great get best of both worlds but how many non-gamers going to buy the Xbox one for TV features knowing Apple may be dropping something very similar if not better for far less in another year or so.

hellvaguy981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

@JoelT

W/e tech that MS got from kinect you can be sure they own the patents for it and have zero to worry from apple or a duplicated device regarding those specific patents. Thats just basic business 101 to secure those before investing hundreds of millions.

I think the point of apple getting that company was the minds there could create the next big thing. But you can be sure it wont be ripping off kinect.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 981d ago
Abriael981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

Basically subsidizing means that the xbox one would be sold together with the cable box/subscription, and instead of having to pay 500 bucks for it, you'll pay it off through the cable fees over time.

Basically like they do with cellphones.

Excalibur981d ago

@ JoelT and Abriael

Ok got it.

iamnsuperman981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

I can see how but I don't see why. Why would cable companies want to pay up front for something when you need the cable box anyway (I only see this as some sort of promotional/higher level package as, if it comes to the UK, companies are trying to under cut each other not add more on) patcher fails to see this isn't like a phone type deal where you need the phone to access the network. The user only needs the cable box not the one. This is a very one sided deal as the companies do not gain from this (unless it is just a normal promotional dealbl: get a free one with x package. Something that isn't remotely new)

Ripsta7th981d ago

Cable companies will be offering an xbox1 instead of a cable box, x1 beimg cheaper than retail price w cable company

Ron_Danger981d ago

Except you'd still need the cable box

Godmars290981d ago

Except that the XB1 can't operate as a DVR for TV. MS would have to be making their rumored specific box which came with regular cable box innards, the DVR, and a HDD while not playing games.

And considering that this is being talked about before the system out much less response to it measured, this is either too premature, or what MS had planned all along. To introduce a second, non-gaming "console" which is really a MS branded cable box.

Wikkid666981d ago

Cable companies will offer One as an option to go along with a cable box.

So the cable company will buy the console from MS. Then you will pay the cable company say $10 or $15 for the use of it.

PoSTedUP981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

they would have to come out with a much Much cheaper xbox one. i pay around $100/mo for internet, phone, And cable (optimum triple play) and there are much cheaper alternatives than mine, and this is without the $400-500+tax addition for a cable box (X1). i dont see it being sucessful if it does.

it too much of a risk imo for both MS and that cable company. the cable company would have to pay for the Xboxes, it woukd prob cost a lot, that or MS would have to take a loss for someone to be interested to sell them cheaper. a big risk for a market where ppl are content with what they already have (movies andtv on their phones, netflix etc.)

JessiePinkmanYo981d ago

@ Superman, true, but phone companies also offer tablets the same way, and with tablets and even certain phones, you can connect to wifi without having to use the phone companies service.

I think what's being speculated, is cable companies will offer you a "free" or heavily discounted X1 if you lock into a contract with them for a cable package.

Prime157981d ago

Does x1 have dvr capabilities?

If not, then you still need your cable box if you want to dvr things like most people.

If yes, 500gb for games AND DVRing?

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 981d ago
Drewidian981d ago (Edited 981d ago )

I've been saying it was going to happen. When it does and you have cable and satellite companies around the world pushing the Xbox One, it will almost over night become the king in the living room.

mcstorm981d ago

Yeah its a great idea imo as it adds more to Sky/cable boxes as it runs Microsoft OS at the front and the Sky/cable box in the background. I think this could pay off very well for Microsoft in the long run it just depends on how they add xbox live into this because if they add xbox live into the subscription its a big plus for a lot of people.

The next few years are going to be interesting to see which direction Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft go with there consoles.

josephayal981d ago

Well, Pachter is never wrong

Darrius Cole981d ago

Oh yeah, bubbles for "funny".