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Microsoft expands network of TV-like ads on Xbox Live
Microsoft expands network of TV-like ads on Xbox Live
April 24, 2012 | By Tom Curtis

April 24, 2012 | By Tom Curtis
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Microsoft revealed on Tuesday that it has expanded its lineup of advertising partners on Xbox Live, and will distribute even more TV-like ad spots across the various media apps on the platform.

Xbox Live media apps such as ESPN, Last.fm, Manga Entertainment, GameSpot, and MUZU.TV will now include 15 to 30 second video ad spots. These partners join companies like UFC, TMZ, and Crackle, which have offered these video ads since December.

Microsoft first introduced these TV-like advertisements with last year's major dashboard update, as part of a larger initiative to grow the Xbox 360 platform from a games console into a full-blown entertainment hub.

According to Microsoft, that plan is working so far, as entertainment app usage has doubled year over year for Xbox Live Gold members in the U.S.

This trend toward multimedia entertainment has also coincided with an increase in ad revenue for Microsoft, as ad spending on Xbox Live has increased by 142 percent since 2010.

Xbox Live currently boasts some 40 million active members worldwide, and Microsoft says that U.S.-based Gold members spend an average of 84 hours a month using the service, making it an ideal platform for entertainment and advertisements alike.


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Comments


Joseph Anthony B. A. Tanimowo-Reyes
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The last thing we need.

Harold Myles
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The first time I saw an ad for McDonalds on my 360 dashboard was the last time I used my 360... about 2 years ago.

Patrick Davis
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So... what is my monthly fee for again?

Adam Bishop
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I've been a console gamer all my life. It's still my favourite way to play games. But all the ridiculous hoops that console makers seem to want to make us jump through are continually pushing me further into PC gaming and away from AAA console titles.

Glenn Sturgeon
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Oh boy adds to go along with nickel and diming you for everything else, surely another reason to be glad i don't support XBL. The farther the consoles move from being general game systems, the more i love my pc.

Ian Uniacke
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There is NO way I will ever connect my 360 to the internet now.

Joe McGinn
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Yes because that's the problem with this FOR PAY service. There are not enough ads on it.

Timothy Barton
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That's the issue I have with it. I still play Xbox Live regularly and it is still the best online service of the big 3, but I shouldn't have so many ads on something I pay for. I would be more understandable if they offered a free ad-supported but fully functional version, but not with paying AND getting the ads.

Ujn Hunter
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Thanks Microsoft! I already have to search through media and ad crap just to find my "Games" section, this should be even more fun! Can someone figure out how to get the old "Blade" dashboard back? Ugh. On a side note, thank god I don't use any of that media garbage on my Xbox!

Matt Cratty
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Just another reason to be a pc gamer.

Dan Edward
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Sounds like storm in a teacup to me. This affects ads in apps, not in general on the dash or in games. I am in no way interested in having to put up with more advertisements, but it does seem strange that we sound the klaxon so loud about something that everyone accepts without so much as a shrug in a similar context. Cable television is a pay service as well and is orders of magnitude more ad inundated than XBL. In many cases they're transplanting the same content from that delivery pipeline onto XBL, so why should it be that shocking that some of the same advertising model would migrate over with it? Seriously, if you don't enjoy these parts of the user experience, then don't use them (I generally won't be), but if you're saying that you won't ever connect your box to the Internet over ads you'll probably never see or that you won't use your console for playing games anymore because of policies that don't affect your experience as a player at all, then I just don't know what to tell you. I think sometimes people are looking for some justification for their pro-PC/Sony jingoism.

Adam Bishop
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I don't subscribe to cable, I use Adblock on my web browser, etc. I hate advertising in general, but I especially hate advertising in things I've already paid for.

William Johnson
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Here is the problem. Console makers make money from licensing out the ability to use their console. They also make a percent of profit from selling downloadable games. And in the case of Microsoft, they make money by charging their consumers to use their servers.

Basic Cable TV on the other hand makes a profit from cable providers, and each channel gets a small cut. These channels can't stay afloat with this small cut, so they sell advertising space.

Now, on the other hand, premium cable TV, has no ads. Showtime, HBO, etc. They cost more, so they can get away with that.

Xbox Live use to be a premium, and I'd argue, since they did raise the price of Xbox Live, that it is still a premium service. That is the problem. Why are people paying for a premium service and not getting a premium service? Its insulting to the consumer, and shows a fundamental lack of respect for them and their money.

Patrick Davis
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I want the days of a game console being just a game console back...

Joseph Anthony B. A. Tanimowo-Reyes
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Nintendo's still holding onto that, which is why I still support them.


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