Sky Player on Xbox 360 to Launch Mid-October

--Service to Feature Interactive TV Services, Including Avatar-Driven Social Viewing

According to an article in the October issue of BSkyB's subscriber publication, Sky Magazine, a version of its Sky Player broadband TV service will be available on the Microsoft Xbox 360 console in mid-October. Sky Player on Xbox 360, which was first announced in May (see the article published on, May 29th) and which will feature a range of live and on-demand programming, will require an Xbox Live Gold subscription, and will also require users to be subscribed to Sky movie and sports programming packages in order to view any programming from those packages. It has a dedicated Web page at

When Sky Player on Xbox 360 was first announced, Microsoft and Sky promised that it would provide a range of "unique interactive services." Among other things, Sky Sports' live coverage is expected to be supplemented by a range of interactive TV applications, including apps that allow viewers to use Xbox Live avatars to communicate with one another in voice or text in a shared virtual environment in real time via their broadband connection while watching a sports broadcast, and apps that allow them to check news, league tables and other information. The service is also expected to provide interactive TV apps in association with other genres of programming, and to feature Twitter and Facebook applications.