Reuters reports on plans by Microsoft to create a new subscription-based TV service available via its Xbox console. According to Reuters’ sources, talks have been held with TV networks about a product to rival plans by Google and other new media companies to move into TV.
The service would charge a monthly fee for access through the Xbox to networks such as ABC, NBC, Fox, CBS, ESPN or CNN, according to two sources familiar with the plans.
Other options include allowing cable subscribers to use the Xbox to watch shows with more interactive functions. Viewers could, for instance, message with friends over the console while viewing their favorite shows.
Alastair Bruce (@ajbruce), content manager for MSN UK, has studied over 30 organisations to produce this detailed presentation on pay wall and subscription models. He examines bundling, micropayments, metered systems, freemium and 100 per cent subscription models, across consumer/specialist titles and national/local newspapers. Who is doing what, and what comes next?
How publishers are charging for online content or consumption and implementing paywalls and subscription services
Microsoft’s senior vice-president for online services said the company is not focused on ‘getting non-Google content,’ reports the FT.
Satya Nadella’s comments imply the company would be unlikely to pay newspaper owners and other publishers for removing their content from Google, an idea that had been discussed with News Corp.
Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s senior vice-president for online services, refused to comment directly on talks with News Corp, but said that Bing was not looking to get a leg-up on Google by securing preferential access to information. ‘That’s not at all a focus for us,” he said, adding: “We generally are not focused on getting non-Google content.”
The companies have declined to comment, but the FT reports that Microsoft – which owns search engine Bing – has entered discussions with News Corp ‘over a plan that would involve the media company’s being paid to ‘de-index’ its news websites from Google’.
“The impetus for the discussions came from News Corp, owner of newspapers ranging from the Wall Street Journal of the US to The Sun of the UK, said a person familiar with the situation, who warned that talks were at an early stage.
“However, the Financial Times has learnt that Microsoft has also approached other big online publishers to persuade them to remove their sites from Google’s search engine.”
On top of this and following the launch of the data-rich MSN Local, MSN executive producer Peter Bale told the Telegraph that the site was hoping to take feeds from local newspapers and map the content.
“Hyperlocal news online has never been more important and we think this is a really interesting growth area,” he said.
Payment for the feeds is a possibility or a linking/traffic driving arrangement could be made, he added.
“general knowledge, whether under the brand name of a giant like Britannica or Microsoft, can’t withstand an effort that was developed specifically for the Internet and that harnesses gifted amateurs,” writes John Yemma, editor of the Christian Science Monitor, one week into web-only production.