Today Time Warner Cable and Microsoft have unveiled an app that turns any Xbox 360 game console into a streaming Time Warner Cable box. The result of a deal struck a few months back, the app appears to use an evolved form of the framework that other video services like Netflix and Hulu are using. Time Warner Cable is the first company to bring virtually its full lineup to bear in a streaming console capacity. Over 300 channels are now available, with VOD capability, and possibly more channels added before the end of the year.
Microsoft has been a leader in pushing entertainment, particularly video apps onto its Xbox Live service, being the first console to have Netflix, HBO Go, and many more services. With its new Xbox One console this fall, the console will up the entertainment game, bringing full voice and gesture control to your TV, using Kinect 2.0, which doubles as an IR blaster, and is widely suspected to have similar applications to this one coming in short order to eliminate the cable box altogether in the near future. Check out the video below for the walk through of the experience, which seems to categorize shows a lot better than the existing interface on the cable box does. Of course the additional, unspoken bonus is that this can save you at least a few bucks every month, eliminating cable boxes in the kid’s rooms, for instance — although those savings are offset by the fact that you have to pay $60/year for the necessary Xbox Live Gold subscription. On the other hand, every Xbox 360 also functions as a Windows Media Center extender, so if you’re looking to set up a home entertainment network, it’s a quick and easy way to get it moving.
Access to the app requires an Xbox 360 console, an Xbox Live Gold Subscription, and a Time Warner Cable subscription. Voice and gesture control require an Xbox 360 Kinect.