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More on Full HD, 5.1 Zune streaming for Xbox 360


Established Member
Xbox Live gets 1080p Zune video store, Netflix browsing, Twitter and Facebook integration

Today from the E3 stage in Los Angeles, Microsoft announced plans to dramatically improve their HD video offering through a new technology that enables instant on 1080p streaming with 5.1 audio with Zune video on Xbox 360.

This implementation is as close to a "disc in the drive" experience as possible over the Internet. At a high-level, here is how it works:

* Video startup is nearly instantaneous because of the back-end proprietary Microsoft technology developed by Zune that seamlessly transitions between many different bitrates and resolutions of video.

* Video playback will start at a low bitrate for fast download time and then ramp up to a higher bitrate and quality, up to 1080p with 5.1 audio.

* Features such as smooth fast forward and rewind that users have only seen before with local physical media.

Not quite a Blu Ray killer, but probably a ISP killer. :devil::)


Distinguished Member
You will need to install Silverlight, but test Microsoft's new 1080p smooth streaming tech - HERE

The idea here is that 'Smooth Streaming' allows for an instant start to watching your video with no perceivable buffering, with the picture quality dynamically changing according to the bandwidth conditions. Should you have access to a sustained five megabits of bandwidth between you and the server, Microsoft promises a full 1080p video stream with 5.1 surround sound. If those conditions change for the worse, the stream dynamically switches to a lower quality, lower bandwidth version without skipping a beat.

Initial reports from the E3 conference suggested that this technology would be a US only affair for users of the NetFlix video streaming service, but PR blurb from Microsoft this morning suggests that Smooth Streaming is set to be rolled out on the new, improved Zune video service that sees the Xbox Live video marketplace expand from coverage in eight territories to eighteen.


Distinguished Member
I watched the Avatar clip on the Zune Marketplace tonight, the 1080p stream, and at 282 MB you would have thought you were watching something already downloaded to the hard drive. It was smooth as you like and there was no buffering. The connection was 8 MB TalkTalk broadband over wireless.

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