Analyst: Xbox One's multimedia services keeping Microsoft ahead of Apple, Google

Robert W. Baird analyst says Xbox One's multimedia capabilities helping Microsoft stay ahead of efforts like Apple TV and Google TV.

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The Xbox One's multimedia capabilities are helping Microsoft say ahead of Apple and Google in the living room, according to Robert W. Baird analyst Colin Sebastian. In a note to investors today, Sebastian said the platform's suite of entertainment apps, ability to access Web content, and options for traditional media like music, movies, and TV make the Xbox One a more compelling product that what Google and Apple are offering, at least for now.

Apple TV allows users to stream content to the televisions through dedicated apps like Netflix, Hulu Plus, and Amazon Instant Video, among others. In addition, Apple TV supports AirPlay, which allows users to wirelessly play video and send content from an Apple device to the TV.

Meanwhile, Google's living room multimedia efforts include the Internet-powered Google TV service and the two-inch Chromecast stick, which allows users to stream media from their computer or smartphone to a television.

Sebastian's comments came after he attended an Xbox One preview event recently. Ultimately, he said he believes Microsoft has been mostly successful in its drive to position the Xbox One as the entertainment focal point of the living room.

"Overall, we were impressed with the platform and believe that Microsoft has largely achieved its goal of creating a compelling living room entertainment hub," hesaid. "Games we saw show improvements in graphics and performance over current generation, and multi-media capabilities that keep Microsoft ahead of Google and Apple (for now) in the living room with the integration of console quality gaming, web content, and traditional media."

The Xbox One also features integrated cable TV support, allowing subscribers to view content and use Kinect to search programming. The console launches next Friday, November 22, for $500.

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