The Xbox 360 is quickly turning into a bastion of Microsoft products and services. The gaming console already has Internet Explorer and Bing, but now it’s getting Microsoft’s cloud service – SkyDrive.
Microsoft announced this morning that SkyDrive will be available on Xbox 360 later today. Much like the SkyDrive app for Windows 8, the Xbox 360 app puts the focus on photos and videos. It’s for the rare creature that wants to share their photos on their large HDTV for the whole family to see. It’s a modern rendition of going to your aunt’s house to see her vacation slides, but now you can play some Halo 4 deathmatch with her after the slideshow is over.
Microsoft lists three key features that it feels make SkyDrive for Xbox 360 a perfect fit for the living room:
Shared photos & videos. Share a meaningful event with your friends or family by viewing photos & videos on your TV, or view photos & videos others have shared with you through SkyDrive. Imagine being able to view cherished photos and videos shared by friends and family —like a musical performance, a kid’s birthday, or baby’s first steps—on your TV.
Snap and see. For Windows Phone users, snap a picture and see it appear almost immediately in your camera roll on the big screen. This feels like magic! For example, you could take a quick snapshot of your child making a funny face, fire up the SkyDrive app on your Xbox, and view it right away on your 50” screen. Just make sure you’re using the same Microsoft account sign-in for both Xbox LIVE and your Windows Phone.
Party slide show. Plan a great slide show to play in the background of a dinner party. For example, you could start a slide show of a recent trip for friends, or have holiday-themed photos and videos playing during a holiday party.
The “Snap and see” feature is only available on Windows Phone at the moment, but it’s likely that Microsoft will patch in support for Android and iOS at a later date. It ported SmartGlass to the other two mobile operating systems shortly after it hit Windows Phone so the wait shouldn’t be that long.
There’s been a strong push lately to turn the Xbox 360 into more of an entertainment machine. Microsoft wants to take over the living room and have its console be the only device that you’ll ever need. Not everybody will use SkyDrive, but it’s just one more step towards having a fully functional PC in the living room that just so happens to only use Microsoft products and services.