During Microsoft’s big Xbox One presser today, they unveiled a lot of TV functionality, perhaps too much TV functionality, but little about how it will work. With Wired’s new piece, we get pieces. Of course, I worked for a cable company, so everything will come together. Here’s some hints on how it works:
You’ll Still Need That Cable Box. In a strange move, you’ll still need your Comcast/Time Warner Cable hardware to facilitate the cable TV connection. The Xbox One features an HDMI port, which ensures that you’ll get that audio/video/device control capability through the Xbox, but you’re not going to be streaming television over the internet, IPTV-style. At least, not yet.
You’ll Probably Need A New Cable Box. Chances are that HDMI box you have right now probably isn’t going to handle all the mad switching required to get the Xbox One to recognize channels that fast. Will you be calling TWC for an Xbox One-capable player, which will no doubt be a fun rollout for them.
IR Blaster For Your Cable Box – Or Other – Remote. Makes sense. While this seems like such a silly appendage for such a modern console, this is no doubt what a lot of home theater buffs have been wanting for a while. Being able to control your cable box or to use that special Harmony remote you’ve had specially-programmed for years.
It won’t last. Let’s face it, while cord-cutting isn’t huge yet, it will be and some of these features will probably become vestigial fast, as will that cable box.