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Sky Player on Xbox 360

Live or on-demand service launches this autumn

As expected, Sky and Microsoft have joined forces to bring Sky Player, Sky's online TV service, to Xbox Live, giving Xbox owners access to a range of channels and programmes to either view live or on-demand.

Before you get excited and decide on what package you want though, no details on pricing or packages were even hinted at during the Central London unveiling hosted by Sky Sports News lady, Georgie Thompson.

Europe's Xbox Live boss, Jerry Johnson, would only point CVG in the direction of the PC equivalent of the Sky Player, until further details are given nearer the autumn launch.

Zoom

What we do know is that users will be able to access movies, entertainment shows, documentaries, kids' stuff, music and the arts. There'll also be a major presence from Sky Sports featuring the Premier League and Test Match cricket.

You can also party up and watch the footy in a special viewing room and taunt your mates with avatar expressions. This is for sports only though it could be rolled out to other areas of the service.

The quality will be SD and DVD only to begin with, so no streaming HD. And there's no option to record programs either.

Here's the full release:

For a new customer joining Sky through their Xbox, Sky Player will offer a wide range of live channels and on-demand content via a number of different packages. These customers will also be able to access their favourite shows on a pay-per-view basis.

Existing Sky customers who already own an Xbox will benefit from another way to view their favourite shows, in addition to their Sky set-top box and PC or Mac

There will be a range of unique interactive services available to the Xbox LIVE / Sky Player offering. For Sky Sports, for example, this will mean that live coverage will be supported by range of applications to enhance the viewing experience further. As well as fans being able to communicate with one another in real time via their broadband connections, they will also be able to check news and access fixtures, league tables and other on-demand information. Interactive applications will also be developed across other programmes genres.

Stephen Nuttall, Director of Sky's Commercial Group comments:" Our partnership with Xbox is a further example of our commitment to put choice and control in the hands of customers. Xbox owners now have a range of ways to access Sky content and can pick and choose the platform and packages that are right for them. We are extremely excited about the opportunity of reaching Xbox owners who are looking to experience Sky for the first time, as well as giving our existing customers yet another way to experience the content they love."

Echoing this, Neil Thompson, Head of Xbox UK and Ireland, adds: "Our customers have told us that they want the opportunity to use their consoles as a way to access TV and once again Xbox has pulled off an entertainment first with amazing content and rich interactive experience. The combination of Sky's leadership in content creation and aggregation and our own in creating a constantly evolving new generation of rich 360 entertainment experiences means we are one step closer to our goal of offering Xbox owners the best entertainment experiences out there, whether it's movies, music, games, interactive experiences or high quality TV."

Sky Player joins Xbox LIVE's ever-expanding interactive online offering spanning on-demand films, music videos and games. It also enables users to communicate with each other via live video chat and MSN Messenger, beating console rivals to cement Xbox 360 as a true pioneer of home entertainment.

Sky Player currently provides access to a range of live TV channels - including Sky Sports - and a comprehensive on-demand library of thousands of programmes spanning entertainment, movies, documentaries, kids, culture, news and sport.

Expect further details later this year. Let us (and Sky) know about what packages you want, especially if you don't currently sign up to Sky, in the comments below.

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