back to article Xbox 720 to double-up as a DVR

The Xbox 720 rumour mill has picked up again this year after patents surfaced which suggest Microsoft's next console may also operate as a digital video recorder, fusing telly, film and gaming into a single entertainment hub. Though the patent was filed in 2007, it wasn't approved until 27 December 2011. The US Patent & …

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  1. Trollslayer Silver badge
    Flame

    Patent?

    I want to patent inserting a plug into a socket - oh yes I have a lot of money so other people can't to it without paying me.

    I wish I was joking.

  2. Gordon 10 Silver badge
    FAIL

    Yawn - broken patent system AGAIN.

    Trivial to prove prior art.

    Why dont they just send their Plans for the 720 straight to Sony and Nintendo rather than using the US Patent Office as a middleman?

  3. Is it me?

    Says more about the US Patent office

    You have to wonder what bubble the employees of the US patent office are living in not to have spotted that this is hardly innovation.

    The commonality of architecture beteen a games console and a PVR would be a bit of a give away wouldn't it.

  4. Richard Wharram

    Nnnggghhrrrhhargh

    Combine a games console with a PVR. That's patentable ?

    OK - I'm sure there's more specific jargon in the actual claim but come on. This is silly.

  5. JDX Gold badge

    I Like it

    My PS3 is already my DVD/BR player so a console with a decent DVR sounds like serious sale point for those struggling to choose between MS/Sony.

    How it would integrate with FreeView and FreeSat though, is my question. I've no idea how fiddly that is, but it would be nice if it worked.

    1. Frank Bough
      WTF?

      Is it possible

      that you are entirely unaware of Sony's PlayTV?

      1. Blank Reg Silver badge

        I think the PlayTV is only available in Europe and parts of Asia so not everyone is aware of it. But still how is this patent likely to stand up when it's been done already?

    2. squilookle

      I assume it would work in a similar way to how Windows Media Centre works with Freeview, which is actually very well. .

      In fact, I already have this functionality through my XBox (in a round about way) as the XBox functions as an extender for Media Centre, although I rarely use it as I have a Freeview+ box which takes less faffing about.

  6. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

    Sir

    So, if I've already got Sky+ HD 3D or whatever, what's the point?

    1. Law

      Kids generally don't get Sky HD 3D thingies in their bedrooms... plus I'm guessing this will be freeview not sky.

  7. Jad
    FAIL

    I guess they never heard of XBMC ...

    you know the "X Box Media Centre", written for the XBox, then ported to other systems?

    1. Mark Broadhurst
      Stop

      XBMC

      Xbox Media Centre acts as a media centre extender for a PC you still need to have a TV card or what not in the pc and have it record the Xbox just plays back or lets you schedule recordings.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

        Sir

        @Mark B

        "Xbox Media Centre acts as a media centre extender for a PC"

        Maybe I misunderstood your post, but it is equally adept at streaming media from a NAS array without the need for a PC. Just sayin'.

  8. MJI Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Patent should fail

    PCs can do it. PS3 has PVR addon.

    What are they patenting next?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So if this patent passes

    will it be illegal to market home theatre/media centre PCs?

    1. Ammaross Danan
      Coat

      HTPC

      One would wonder huh? Would be funny to see MS sue an HTPC company using Windows as the "interface" that integrates a DVR viewer (Windows Media Player) with a gaming console (think having Steam open in another window would count?).

      The miracle would be if they make the nextbox power-efficient enough in "off"-but-DVR-mode to keep your front room ambient temp lower than the 80*F the XBox360 makes it....

  10. Giles Jones Gold badge

    There was an argument about having integrated non-core functionality a while back in the early days of Blu-ray and Freeview. But the problem now is Smart TVs. They have so much built in functionality that you can end up with three devices all providing similar features.

    Samsungs Smart TVs and DVR/Bluray combos both provide identical smart TV functionality. So you're paying for it twice.

    Of course games consoles tend to get regular firmware updates and expanded functionality, but I do wonder what the answer is to duplication.

    Perhaps games consoles can be re-branded as entertainment hubs with games just one facility they offer. The smart part of a smart TV could be a module so you don't have to buy it if you don't want it.

  11. fLaMePrOoF

    "plug-in standard definition Freeview tuner module accessory"

    Nice. Just need to add 'inator' to the end...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Hmm, like the PS3 you mean.

    I have been using my PS3 as a DVR for 3 years and very happy I am too..

    1. Brian 6
      Meh

      @AC

      Yes for 3 years, this patent was filled in 2007 that was 5 years ago.....Does anyone actually READ THE ARTICLES before they post ???

      1. Eddie Edwards
        Thumb Down

        Point of order: America operates on the "first to invent" basis, rather than the "first to file" basis, so Sony's release of a product one year after filing *is* relevant; they were working on it back in 1995.

      2. Fred 21
        Stop

        Media won't be recorded on hard drive

        I'm not even sure the writer who produced the article read the patent or uses an Xbox for that matter!

        The patent states that users "users can record media content while playing games. Alternatively, users can record content when the gaming console is turned off" this implies that the recording is not being made on your hard drive but - probably - in the cloud (elements of which were added to the Xbox on the last update). I'd hazard a guess that this would then mean you would stream the recorded content to your Xbox in the same way as 4oD, 5oD do on the current Xbox.

        So this: "it could potentially put off content providers, who might be unhappy about their programmes being recorded to a hard drive." won't happen.

        I just hope MS sort the media interface out, the music player is very frustrating when trying to navigate through lots of albums\tracks\artists stored on my NAS.

  13. Drummer Boy
    Thumb Down

    Use an XBox as a PVR

    Not until they make it much quieter!!

  14. StrictlySocial

    I love my xbox, but I wil never use it for films/tv .... that is unless they patent a noiseless fan

    1. UkForest
      WTF?

      Hey?! I conveniently bought my son an XBOX 360 S for Christmas and it's had some serious hammer so far. It's kept in the lounge and not once have I heard the fan whilst either gaming or watching movies via NAS drive...

  15. Nu11u5

    10 years too late!

    I see a lot of people bringing up the Sony PlayTV, but forgetting the Sony PSX DVR from 2003. It was a fully integrated DVR with a PS2, as well as having some features from the then not-yet-released PS3, including the XMB and forwards comparability with the PSP.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can we stop with the 720 rubbish?

    It's not going to be the Xbox 720. Where on earth did anyone get this daft idea from? The iPhone 4 will not be replaced by the iPhone 8. The PS2 was not replaced by the PS4. Star Trek 2 was not followed by Star Trek 4 (although many wish it had been, and they'd skipped 3 altogether).

    Depending on who you speak to, it was called the 360 to either a) discourage any assumption it was equivalent to a PS2 or b) imply that it put the gamer "at the centre" of the experience (spot the joss sticks at work).

    It'll probably have some poncey name like "Xbox Ascension" or "Xbox Revelation". I doubt they'll be able to call it the "Xbox that actually works and doesn't break down", though.

    Sony's launch of PS Vita rather than PSP2 suggests a similar approach for the next Playstation (although that'd really be daft)...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Like doing an Intel

      486, then Pentium 1/pro,2,3,4, then cores etc.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It has to have Windows in the name

      Didn't you get the memo, everything from Microsoft has to be called Windows _____

      I'm think Windows Integrate Media and Play System sounds nice (WIMPS) .....

    3. MJI Silver badge

      I call it the NextBox

      No problems there!!!!

      PS4 is logical any number after XBox is not.

      Wii U however - what a rubbish name, (so was Wii - Revolution was good)

  17. roblightbody

    With my £300 Media Center PC, with its £75 twin tuner Freeview HD card, connected to my xbox via media center i already have a truly brilliant dvr. I've never seen one yet that comes close to the slickness of the interface - even though its not been updated for years! I previously used a hard disk recorder and it was a lot of hassle. The fact that the PC is also useful for general purpose work, and the xbox is also useful for games and other things, is a bonus!

    1. Citizen Kaned

      Tivo?

      i just upgraded to virgin tivo. man, it makes v+ and sky+ look terrible. it is also silent ;)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Not sure if I would call subscribing to Virgin Media an "upgrade".

        Their customer service is dire.

  18. Andy 97
    Meh

    What about fan noise?

    My 360 is so loud when it's hot it's a wonder they can call is a media extender.

    Quieter fans perhaps eh MS?

  19. Al Jones

    VOD functionality probably more likely to be actually used

    Video on Demand clients, like the iPlayer in Britain and Verizon's recently announced XBox Live service in the US are probably much more likely to be used on consoles than full on DVR functionality. (Except for the fact that Microsoft won't allow the iPlayer on the XBox, because they don't want any any useful add-ons to be available unless the end user pays for a subscription).

  20. Spotfist
    Gimp

    erm... Isn't the "720" supposed to be shown at THIS years E3?

    Also my PS3 is far louder than my Xbox.

  21. MarmiteToast

    Why do they call it the xbox 720?

    Because when you see it you turn 720 degrees and walk away.

    1. John H Woods Silver badge

      Err...

      ... 720 degrees would be spinning round twice then continuing to walk TOWARDS it

  22. JDX Gold badge

    question

    Will this PVR actually mean it connects to normal TV inputs,,, or that it'll be purely TV over internet like BT's service? I had assumed the former, if the latter than I'm out!

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