Microsoft reputedly courting the broadcaster for content tie-in.
If the idea of having to use a PC to download content from the BBC, via the iPlayer, doesn’t appeal to you, then perhaps the possibility of using your Xbox 360 will. According to the Times, Microsoft and the Beeb are ‘in talks’ relating to digital distribution of content via the Live marketplace.
Talking to The Times’ Ross Honey, Senior Director for Media at Microsoft explained that the company is in talks with several European providers with a view to getting serious about entering the European video-download market. Considering the large array of HD content available in the BBC archives, the deal would certainly make sense for both parties concerned. Admittedly, some may object to the idea of having to pay to access shows that have aired for free, but Microsoft seems to think the market is there, particularly as its been offering this in the US for about a year.
We’re inclined to agree with that thinking, although the main attraction of downloading from Marketplace for us has always been the possibility of getting high-definition shows, which are only available in these shores in standard definition.
Whether or not these discussions will lead to a deal, and for that matter just who is sweet talking, who is a tad unclear at the moment. All we can confirm is that the sooner I get my hands on CSI in HD the happier I’ll be.
The Times Online.