High definition movie downloads within minutes


xbox-360-hd-dl.jpgThe Xbox 360 is the first gaming console to feature high definition content, only to be usurped by the PS3 when the latter was released a year later (in terms of technology, not available library and titles). The demise of Toshiba’s HD DVD format also made the Xbox 360 lose out in terms of high definition content, but thankfully that drought is pretty short lived considering Virgin Media and Microsoft have just announced that by the time the year is about to turn over to 2009, Xbox 360 owners will be able to download high definition movies from the Xbox Live marketplace using a supported broadband service, taking anywhere from 15 minutes to half an hour. Now that’s extremely fast by any standards, and you will be able to enjoy a fair number of movies the next day simply by leaving your Xbox 360 turned on overnight.

To date, a Virgin Media spokesperson has shed light that Virgin Media’s 50MB broadband service will be made available to over nine millions homes by the end of 2008 – that number makes up more than 70% of Virgin Media’s entire network if you’re a stickler for statistics. Unfortunately, there is no word on pricing and availability for the services, but we do know that full high definition movie downloads through Xbox Live takes a quarter of an hour at best, which is actually less time than driving out to a nearby store, looking for the movie of your choice among numerous aisles, waiting for your turn at the checkout counter, and ultimately driving back to your home (don’t forget to add to the cost of gas!).

This Easter will see Xbox Live subscribers getting a treat of 5 blockbuster movies for 100 MS points a pop – that’s roughly 85p when converted to Great Britain Pounds. These movies can be rented in both HD and SD formats, but chances are people will opt for the latter if they’re already rockin’ to great high definition games on their Xbox 360.

Source: Tech.co.uk

7 reviews or comments

zzZZzzzzzz Says: March 23, 2008 at 1:10 am

This is not going to work like you might think it will were still way off. The fact is this is an xbox thing as well downloads are to studio’s a four letter word. Piracy comes to mind!! downloads are crap at that, there is a reason there is so much content on a blu-ray or hd-dvd disk its needed to have lossless audio, and 1080p true HD. 25-50 gig downloads dont sound even this gen mabey 2-3 years when our internet works better. That along with the biggest factor studio support will make this more of a feature than a ready to day type of thing.

Kevin Says: March 23, 2008 at 1:16 am

Lets not forget the 20 gig hdd in most 360 out there thats not even one bluray disk. Its also a thing MS will not let you do is use a external to transfer movies and will never allow. Proprietary HDD that cost freakin $100 for a 20 gig at that.

Bill D. Says: March 23, 2008 at 2:49 am

Yeah but the high definition is only 720P or 1080i and does not come with extras. This might put an end to blockbuster but not blu-ray. People like collecting their favorite movies on disks with the special features and that is not going to change, especially since the movies you get on the xbox will automatically delete themselves.

Resistance Says: March 23, 2008 at 5:07 am

Article is written by a 360 fanboy.

Bluray is the future. Xbox hasn’t got a big enough HDD to make downloading HD content take off.

Mornelithe Says: March 23, 2008 at 7:52 am

I’ll believe it when I see it. US broadband infrastructure isn’t capable of supporting such capacity & speeds.


paulsmith Says: March 25, 2008 at 3:47 am

Even if 720p films are available as downloads, the bitrate will be low and quality nowhere near that of a blu ray.

HD is just a buzzword for this service , they shouldn’t really be using it.

The success of this service will depend upon the reliabilty and speed of transfers , but most importantly price.

If a bluray is £15 and a download £1 then we are in business. If its £10 for digital download, then it is a no go.

I welcome competition, hopefully blu ray will drop prices to £5 a film (i can dream)

morty Says: March 25, 2008 at 5:20 am

I love the fact that I can download TV episodes on the Live marketplace and own the HD version. I currently have the entire season 1 of jericho over 20 Episodes sitting on my HD. Even better my family and I share a xbox account so we can “borrow” the copy of the show and watch it in their home on their 360. They simply log in and it allows the free download of the show that has already been purchased with that account.

There are 100’s of shows and 100’s of movies all in HD. I dont know if the bitrate is higher but it all looks like a much better quality then my local cable companies over compressed artifact filled service.

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