Company says entire families use devices for much more than gaming
Microsoft says there are now more than 76 million XBox consoles worldwide, more than three times the original number of XBoxes sold.
Saying "living room entertainment" is undergoing its biggest change since the change from black and white color to television, the company has also sold 24 million Kinect sensors, which allow customers to use their bodies instead of handheld controllers to play games, watch TV, or listen to music.
“Yes, we started with video games, but we have been on a journey to make Xbox the center of every household’s entertainment,” says Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business.
He added: “We believe that Xbox is being used by more people in the household, during more hours in the day and for more forms of entertainment. … People are using Xbox in the morning to work out with the Kinect Nike+ Fitness program, kids are watching cartoons, families are enjoying movies, and of course people are playing blockbuster games like ‘Halo 4.’”
Mehdi and Nancy Tellem, president of entertainment and digital media at Microsoft, unveiled details about XBox's reach at a D: Dive into Media session.
Tellem, former president of entertainment for CBS, is heading the Los Angeles-based Xbox Entertainment Studios, which is creating interactive content for Xbox and other devices.
“When I worked in traditional TV, we would find ourselves saying things like ‘Wouldn’t it be cool if we could add an interactive aspect directly into the show and engage directly with the viewers?’” said Tellem. “With Xbox, that is possible today.”
One of XBox's businesses advantages over other gaming systems is that it already has so many devices in homes, connected to TVs, Mehdi said. More than half of the devices are also linked together through the Xbox LIVE network.
Tellem oversees live event programming for Xbox LIVE, which so far has included airing the presidential debates with interactive polling. Viewers submitted 3 million answers questions posed on-screen during one debate. Xbox also aired interactive red carpet coverage for Sundays Grammy Awards and plans to do the same for the Oscars.