The evolution of the games console has seen it become so much more than a place to play Sonic the Hedgehog and Pro Evolution Soccer. Today, the games console is very much a central part of our digital world.
The developments seen within XBOX Live, Microsoft’s online gaming and content delivery service for the XBOX console, has been perhaps the most obvious platform on which gamers have been able to see the evolution of the games console.
Before the XBOX, previous attempts to bring online gaming and digital content together had been largely forgettable. Sega’s Dreamcast had tried to kick-start the online console gaming revolution but was hampered by an undeveloped broadband market whilst the Playstation 2 didn’t ship with network adaptors as standard.
The XBOX on the other hand was designed from day one to be an out-an-out online gaming platform. With network capabilities, hard drive storage and a simple-to-use, cost effective online gaming portal, the service proved to be a huge hit for Microsoft. Today, XBOX Live has more than 30 million members around the world.
Today, XBOX live is about much more than just gaming. Whilst the facility to play against fellow gamers from around the world is still the lead attraction for most players, XBOX Live now packs in a host of other cutting edge features.
Using a headset or the KINECT camera, users can chat by voice and video with other users, access social networks including Facebook and Twitter and stream music through their XBOX console via Last.fm.
XBOX users with a Sky TV subscription can even stream Sky programming, including live Premier League football, movies and entertainment directly to their XBOX via Sky Player*, effectively giving users the benefits of an additional set-top box in another room (although not all channels are available on Sky Player)
Users can also take advantage of exclusive privileges and rewards in the Xbox Live Marketplace, including additional downloads to take your games to the next level.
What’s more, a 12 month XBOX Live Gold subscription pack is now just £35, a saving of £4, at Very.co.uk or you can save £5 when you buy your subscription pack with any XBOX console . If you want to get the most from your XBOX console, there has never been a better time to sign up to XBOX Live.
Broadband connection required.
* Subject to Sky subscription