Microsoft executive J Allard says that the firm’s Xbox 360 console and Zune MP3 player are ultimately designed to connect to the same network.
"The Zune guys have to run really fast. The Windows Mobile guys are on a two-year release cycle. The Xbox team now needs to focus on cost reduction, distribution and quality process. Everyone is on their own cadence. The one thing that transcends all this is the network as the nexus," said Allard in a New York Times technology blog.
"Today we have Xbox Live for $50 a year. We have Zune Pass at $15 a month. We don’t have a rationalized premium version yet. Fast forward a little bit, and you can image a menu like DirecTV. There is basic, there is enhanced, there is movie pack and NFL Sunday ticket.
"What I want to do at Entertainment and Devices division is build an entertainment service that can connect, that has a screen and buttons and a speaker, so you can watch what you want, where you want, how you want," Allard said.
He also noted that, in his vision, content providers would rely upon Microsoft to handle the technical details and marketing of selling their products.
"And you don’t have to worry about multiple formats; we do it all for you on the back end. And you can reach all these eyeballs without lifting a finger."