– Microsoft (NASD: MSFT) has held "in-depth" talks with Disney-owned
ESPN on the
possibility of streaming live sporting events to its Xbox 360 video game
console, The New York Times reported.
The deal would reportedly see ESPN charge
Microsoft a per-subscriber fee for access to the live streams and other
content, which may include some interactive games, people close to the talks
told The Times.
To date, Microsoft has sold over 39 million Xbox 360 consoles,
around 20 million of whom also use the Xbox Live online service each month to
play games online, as well as watch a growing stable of movies, TV episodes and
The Times noted that Xbox Live’s average of more than 1 million
concurrent users, rising to as high as 2.2 million at peak periods — rivals
ratings on cable channels like Cartoon Network or TBS — but cautioned that
many on Xbox Live are playing games, not watching video.
One of The Times’
sources noted that a deal between Microsoft and Disney "was not