Late last month, HBO Go, MLB.TV, and Comcast Xfinity apps were launched on Xbox LIVE, making a wide array of additional TV content available on the platform to those with the appropriate subscriptions. However, on launch day, Comcast (and Time Warner) subscribers were unable to access the HBO Go content. While there’s no word on whether or not Time Warner users will ever be able to use HBO Go, the @Xbox account did tweet today that HBO Go is now available for Comcast Xfinity subscribers.
Now, one unfortunate thing about using the HBO Go app instead of the Xfinity app to view HBO content is that doing so will count towards your monthly broadband usage. The Xfinity app on the other hand is treated as another set-top box (without any accompanying fees, of course), and thus does not count towards data usage.
Both the Xfinity TV and HBO Go apps offer Kinect integrations. In the Xfinity app, you can use either voice control or your arms to navigate through the app. And in the HBO Go app, you can use your voicew to search through the catalogue of shows.
So, what are you waiting for? You can now watch Game of Thrones using either the Xfinity app or the HBO Go app, so get to watching!
Microsoft announced on Tuesday that three major sources of entertainment content — Xfinity, HBO GO, and MLB.TV — have all been made available on the Xbox 360 to Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers, with Kinect integration to boot. In the Xfinity TV app, you will be able to control it with either your voice or by waving your hands around, in the HBO GO app, you can voice search the HBO catalogue for shows, and in the MLB.TV app, you will be able to pause and rewind live games using your voice and arms.
Microsoft also revealed that gamers in the US spend more time using Xbox LIVE entertainment apps than they do playing games through the service, so this is great news for the many folks out there who use their Xboxes for entertainment purposes beyond gaming. The average Xbox 360 Gold user also uses the service for 84 hours each month, since we’re dishing out stats.
However, hold off on calling the time of death for cable, though. You will still need proper cable subscriptions to access these services, however. And, bizarrely, subscribers to either Comcast or Time Warner Cable will not be able to access HBO GO on the Xbox. If I owned one, this would be a huge bummer; I would have loved to use it to watch Boardwalk Empire episodes.
But still, if you do have a Comcast subscription, or an appropriate subscription to enjoy the other two services, then you can now indulge in a far wider variety of content on your Xbox.
At an HBO press conference in San Francisco on Tuesday, HBO announced that it will be bringing its popular HBO GO streaming service to the Xbox 360 on April 1st, right on time for the season two premier of Game of Thrones.
Now, before we begin to prepare a funeral for cable, it is worth noting that HBO is not a standalone service — you will still need a cable subscription with AT&T, Brighthouse, Charter, Comcast, COX, DIRECTV, Dish, RCN, Suddenlink, Time Warner, Verizon, or WOW! — but there are still many practical uses of this. For example, in a household with a cable subscription where a bedroom has an Xbox 360, that lucky Xbox owner would be able to watch HBO’s assortment of quality shows.
It would also be useful if, should some HBO “on-demand” content becomes unavailable, you will still be able to stream it to your TV easily through the Xbox. HBO GO is currently available on iOS, Android, ROKU, and Samsung Internet TVs, on top of the website (which is quite painless to use; when I needed to catch up on Boardwalk Empire, I did use HBO GO quite extensively for a while.)