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Xbox Moves Continue To Increase Microsoft's Reach In Music Beyond Xbox Music

Xbox-musicIn many ways the foundation of the potential success of Xbox Music is built on the fact that music has long permeated the Xbox experience. Even as Microsoft has developed Xbox Music, they've been extending the Xbox brand to not only connect Microsoft entertainment offerings but to tie together hardware via Xbox Live. As Tyler Hayes notes, "Who would have thought a few years ago that the Xbox would be a trojan horse for music, or that it could actually pull it off?"

Tyler Hayes asked "Why Is No One Talking About The New Xbox Music?" back in June when Microsoft first announced the new music streaming service that launched in October. It reminded me that I often wonder why more people don't talk about the Xbox and music. Music is a huge part of the Xbox experience due to its presence in games and movies as well as the Kinect's growing use in both music creation and in dance with music.

Xbox Music is a streaming music service that is available on a full range of gadgets from PCs to mobile devices. That usage of the Xbox brand makes it a connector for Microsoft products, in addition to Microsoft entertainment offerings, from software to the Xbox TV set-top box which is due next year and will have scaled-down Xbox capabilities. The set-top box along with the arrival of SkyDrive to Xbox for photo and video viewing on TV (as well as cloud-based music streaming) deepens Microsoft's presence in the living room. The set-top box is also:

"part of a broader effort to ensure its core architecture for the next-generation Xbox is scalable enough to be put together to run on a number of devices. We understand that the company could opt to combine its core system for the next Xbox with a phone stack to deliver a phone capable of running a full version of Microsoft's Xbox Live services. It has also investigated providing this functionality to TV OEMs, who could include the core services as part of a licensed Xbox television set."

Of course the music experience on Xbox includes music from services such as VEVO, iHeartRadio and Last.fm. Xbox entertainment apps also include a variety of other music sources with more on the way.

The availability of the Xbox Live's service across all devices is another way the Xbox brand is a connector for Microsoft and third party services. As noted, music permeates uses of the Xbox 360 as well as the Xbox Live service (don't forget Karaoke!). If Xbox Music is a success it can be partly credited to the relationship of the Xbox to music. But even if it fails, music will remain an important part of the Xbox Entertainment experience all of which traces back to the Xbox itself which continues to sell quite well.

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Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/App.net) blogs about music crowdfunding at Crowdfunding For Musicians (@CrowdfundingM). To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.

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