From the outset, the Xbox One was designed to be a great media device, as well as a gaming console. If you remember the Xbox 360, it was a sea of media apps for music, video, and more. The Xbox One was ready to dial that up to 11, and make it the one place to be completely entertained, when you turned on the TV set.
Of course, backlash ensued, as Xbox seemed to make too much of the media capabilities. A lot of the entertainment ideas were scaled back, and now the Xbox One is a gaming device, with media tendencies. If the ports on the Xbox Series X are to be believed, you may not even get an HDMI-In port.
Ah, yes, let’s discuss that HDMI-In port, for a second. To me, this was a key port of the Xbox One. The way Xbox tells it, you use that port to plug in a cable box. Then, coupled with the OneGuide and media settings, you’d be able to easily get into television shows, when you want to take a break from Halo or Gears of War.
Naturally, people realized that if you plugged in anything, with an HDMI plug, that port would work. You can plug in an Apple TV, Roku Stick, Amazon Fire TV, cable box. Hell, you can plug in an Xbox 360, Playstation 4, or NIntendo Switch. That little port made it all possible.
Fast forward to 2020. That port, frankly, is now an afterthought, and as I noted, it may not even be on the next Xbox One console. I, personally, think it should remain, but if Xbox really wants to lean into gaming, then having their users focus squarely on gaming seems to be where they plan to go.
Of course, there’s actually another way Xbox could be a viable entertainment device: apps. Right now Xbox One has a good selection media apps: Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, ESPN, etc.
If Xbox One, and Windows in general, can boost the number of entertainment apps available (making sure all of the major streaming TV services, and TV everywhere apps are there) then there may not be a need for the HDMI port. And, in the case of the Xbox Series X, if that console can perform with the speed of light, as being advertised, getting out of a game, and into the next episode of “The Mandalorian” should be a breeze, and fulfill that instant gratification.
But let us have a discussion about entertainment on Xbox. Specifically:
- Of all the time you spend on Xbox, how much of that is used for media?
- What’s your most used media app(s) on Xbox?
- Do you use the HDMI-In port on the console? What do you have plugged in back there?
- Are there some entertainment apps you’d love to see on the Xbox platform?
Let’s have that discussion: Leave a comment, or continue the conversation on Twitter.