Microsoft looks to combat Apple globally with Zune content

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Microsoft will launch its media brand outside of the U.S. for the first time this week, with the debut of the Zune content purchasing service for the Xbox 360.



Microsoft will introduce the Zune brand on its Xbox 360 game console in 18 markets Tuesday, including the U.S., U.K., France, Germany and Australia, according to the Financial Times. The new service will include instant streaming of high definition movie purchases. The digital movie service will come under the Zune name, representing the first time it has been used by Microsoft overseas.



There is no indication, however, that Microsoft intends to take the Zune hardware -- namely, the relatively well received Zune HD -- on a global scale. The brand introduction is for licensed content only.



That the service is available on the Xbox 360 makes it more of a competitor to the iTunes and Apple TV pairing than Apple's market-dominating iPod lineup. The acquisition of licensing agreements has slowed expansion of Apple iTunes movie sales into other territories overseas.



Microsoft has reportedly acquired the rights to the "most popular films" from major studios MGM, Paramount and Universal. The Redmond, Wash., software giant has sold more than 10 million Xbox 360s in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.







Christine Heckart, general manager for TV, video and music marketing at Microsoft, told the Financial Times that the company intends to employ a "three screens" approach for the Zune service, expanding its content to the TV and PC, as well as portable screens like the Zune and mobile phones.







In 2008, Apple went global with iTunes Store movies, delivering them for the first time to the U.K. and Canada. This April, Apple launched the iTunes movie store in Germany, with over 500 Hollywood and German films. Movie rentals can be watched directly on a computer, or streamed to the living room via the Apple TV hardware.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 56
    I'm down with buying an Apple TV after a new refresh, and a subscription service.



    We'll see. \
  • Reply 2 of 56
    roos24roos24 Posts: 170member
    Interesting move from M$. But we'll have to see if it is not too little, too late.



    Time for Apple to bring the attention to the next big thing!
  • Reply 3 of 56
    gigigigi Posts: 65member
    The problem in Canada, is there a french province (Québec) and here all the Blu-Ray got a french version of the film. On iTunes, all the film are English only. Even if the film was a french film made by a quebecer. Go see, "polythecnic", a true story of a massacre in a Montreal shcool in the 90's. Go see the comment of the user in iTunes under that film, everybody are obset.



    I know Quebec is a small market, but all our music artist are on iTunes, why there is no french film yet? iT's too long. I can't rent film from Apple TV because of that. I know it's coming but it's way too long. I know Alliance vivafilm already got an agreement with Apple for french content but I think they concentrate there effort for the european market.\
  • Reply 4 of 56
    galleygalley Posts: 971member
    Have you ever seen a Zune in the wild? Neither have I.
  • Reply 5 of 56
    What is this Zune I keep hearing about?
  • Reply 6 of 56
    The one thing Apple lacks in it's strategy... content. Sony realised this in the 80's, as does Microsoft today. Content is king as they say.

    You can have the best device in the world, but if you don't have content, it's useless.

    Apple beware. Perhaps time to spend some dollar.
  • Reply 7 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by zindako View Post


    What is this Zune I keep hearing about?



    It's for keeping doors open and stopping paper from blowing away, I think.
  • Reply 8 of 56
    I'm glad to see this happening. Whether or not the Zune is "out in the wild" is pretty irrelevant to this story. The story is that the Zune Service is on the XBOX 360. The 360 is a very good console (not without problems) and is in a lot of hands now. The bottom line is they will sell some content.



    This should be considered a good thing by Apple/iTunes users (including me) because it forces Apple to keep working on making iTunes better and the devices more advanced.
  • Reply 9 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by gigi View Post


    The problem in Canada, is there a french province (Québec) and here all the Blu-Ray got a french version of the film. On iTunes, all the film are English only. Even if the film was a french film made by a quebecer. Go see, "polythecnic", a true story of a massacre in a Montreal shcool in the 90's. Go see the comment of the user in iTunes under that film, everybody are obset.



    I know Quebec is a small market, but all our music artist are on iTunes, why there is no french film yet? iT's too long. I can't rent film from Apple TV because of that. I know it's coming but it's way too long. I know Alliance vivafilm already got an agreement with Apple for french content but I think they concentrate there effort for the european market.\



    Gigi, it's not just that! True, it's frustrating, I'm with on that one, but think of your monthly bandwidth of 30GB with Videotron, download 8 HD movies and you've busted your limit! That's another thing that has to change, those pesky limits! Even the fastest plan at 50Mbits only has 100GB! You can bust it in less than 4.5hrs at full speed!
  • Reply 10 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mosqueda View Post


    This should be considered a good thing by Apple/iTunes users (including me) because it forces Apple to keep working on making iTunes better and the devices more advanced.



    Yeah cos Apple have a habit of letting their foot off the gas. Slackers
  • Reply 11 of 56
    And for Microsoft, it's good to see content, but sincerely, without the Zune HD worldwide, what good is that content for? Zune 120GB? Owned that a while ago, but iPod Touch and iPhone are much better video players!
  • Reply 12 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Microsoft will introduce the Zune brand on its Xbox 360 game console in 18 markets Tuesday, including the U.S., U.K., France, Germany and Australia, according to the Financial Times. .



    Apple has been really bad at expanding their presence - still no movies in e.g. Norway, and we are blocked from buying them in e.g. the US store. It's a great thing that Microsoft introduces a store like this here, now let's just hope it makes Apple increase their speed to faster than glacial.
  • Reply 13 of 56
    1) What's a Zune??



    2) Too little, too late.
  • Reply 14 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by 0xCAFE View Post


    And for Microsoft, it's good to see content, but sincerely, without the Zune HD worldwide, what good is that content for? Zune 120GB? Owned that a while ago, but iPod Touch and iPhone are much better video players!



    You can play the movies on XBox 360s.... so it's mostly an AppleTV competitor. Which is good, as Apple has been really, really bad on that service outside the US.
  • Reply 15 of 56
    richlrichl Posts: 2,213member
    I'm a little confused by this move. Xbox 360 owners in the UK already have access to streaming and downloadable HD movies.



    So I'm guessing that this is just a re-branding exercise? Or a widening of the content available? I've got both an Xbox 360 and an Apple TV. The content available for each is comparable (i.e. pretty poor).



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple Insider


    The Redmond, Wash., software giant has sold more than 10 million Xbox 360s since the video game console launched in 2005.



    It certainly has. 34 million, according to the ever-reliable Wikipedia.
  • Reply 16 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by xyzzy01 View Post


    Apple has been really bad at expanding their presence



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by xyzzy01 View Post


    Apple increase their speed to faster than glacial.



    I'm fairly certain this is not Apple's fault, it's the 'fault' of the studio's who are scared that apple will boss them about.
  • Reply 17 of 56
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 4,476member
    Wouldn't it be better for M$ to serve up content that Gamers would like. I think having bunch content that the xbox demographics are not interested it a waste of time and money, You would think M$ would have spend a little of that money they have understanding who the end customer is and they content they are most interested in.



    my kid has a xbox, only because they is what his friend play on and he had no interest in watching of listening to M$ content when we have a nice big TV connect to Satellite. I am not about to hook up his xbox to the system that the rest of us watch TV on.



    This is just M$ attempt to get into the Set Top Box market. They want to be the complete system to everyone. I highly doubt that the population at a whole is going to want their gaming system and STB to be one in the same. most games tend to hide out in their rooms or in the basement where the parents do not yell at them for tying up the TV.



    Why would people want to pay for multiply content services. it bad enough you have to pay for wired home phone and a cell phone and even that is going away.
  • Reply 18 of 56
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Microsoft will launch its media brand outside of the U.S. for the first time this week, with the debut of the Zune content purchasing service for the Xbox 360...



    This sounds more like a side effect of a media contract than an actual strategy from Microsoft. No hardware support, and apparently no master plan.



    Besides which, US companies traditionally do lousy at "spreading overseas" as they don't understand the rest off the world. Apple is having a hard enough time as it is. I really doubt Microsoft can do any better even if they were trying their hardest, which this effort doesn't seem to be so far.
  • Reply 19 of 56
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/bestsellers...MMJTZS1V28HFNV



    When you have a product by Pyrus Electronics ahead of you and you're Microsoft you truly don't get the market in you are attempting to own.
  • Reply 20 of 56
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RichL View Post


    It certainly has. 34 million, according to the ever-reliable Wikipedia.





    24M are stacked up in a Circuit City warehouse in Oklahoma.
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