news\ Mar 27, 2012 at 4:29 pm

Xbox 360 entertainment app usage surpasses online gaming


For the first time, the amount of time average US. gamers spend on various Xbox 360 entertainment apps has surpassed the time they spend playing games online through Xbox LIVE.

Microsoft revealed today that Xbox LIVE Gold members in the United States are now spending "an average" 84 hours per month on Xbox LIVE, with entertainment app usage more than doubled year on year.  This has resulted in a global 30% increase in total hours spent on Xbox LIVE.

Xbox LIVE members are spending more time watching TV, music, and movies than they are playing multiplayer games, the company said.

Microsoft has been pushing for the Xbox 360 to become more of an all-around entertainment hub, not just a gaming machine.  TV and movie on demand services have been a major focus for Microsoft since the initial dashboard update back in December 2011.  Since then Microsoft has partnered with numerous content providers like ESPN, Hulu, Netflix, HBO GO, CinemaNow, and many more.

Video game sales may have dipped 20% during February, but Xbox LIVE product manager Pav Bhardwaj told Eurogamer that the amount of time spent on multiplayer gaming "hasn't reduced at all".  He insists, rather, that everything else has just gone up.

"We're seeing more people spending more time on the Xbox Live platform," he explained.  "The people who are using the platform to enjoy multiplayer gaming, like Call of Duty and Gears of War and Halo, they're still doing that at the same amount of time they were spending previously. What they're now doing is spending even more time watching TV, movies and sport, via their Xbox 360."

Either way, Microsoft has to be pleased with fan usage of the console - whether it be through gaming or entertainment.  And apparently, consumers like what Microsoft is doing.  The Xbox 360 has held on to the top spot in console sales in the U.S. for 14 months straight.

[The Verge]

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