Take a look at your living room – is a gaming console sitting right underneath your TV, tempting you to turn it on and enjoy a session or two of the latest Madden series? If so, you may be helping the revolution against that ugly cable box.
For the last couple of decades, gaming consoles have successfully moved into the heart of most living rooms around the world and that trend shows no signs of slowing down. A recent study revealed that gaming consoles are now serving as entertainment hubs for your living room. Although they still devote much of their resources on gaming, consoles are doing more and more. They’re starting to implement other services such as Netflix, Hulu, Skype, and Pandora. With internet streaming services waging a war on cable companies, it’ll be interesting to see how gaming consoles fit into the mix.
Microsoft’s newest gaming console – the Xbox One – which launched this past November, acts as a mediator between your cable box and your television. In addition to implementing the aforementioned services into the console, it has an HDMI input that allows users to connect directly to their cable or satellite box. It doesn’t process any television signals or tune to any channels; instead, it takes the signal from the cable or satellite box and pipes it through the TV. “We’ve been switching inputs for three decades,” says Jeff Henshaw, the Xbox One platform engineering manager. “Getting everything on a single input is a huge step in the entertainment world”. The Xbox One integrates the source into the Xbox One dashboard – in essence, the cable box becomes a mere accessory that supplements “the Xbox One experience”.
Microsoft does not plan on ending it there. Software updates are on their way and in the very near future, gamers may not even need a cable box after all. So props to you, Microsoft. You may be the One, the legendary hero that we’ve all been waiting for.