Microsoft to launch video-on-demand service?

Microsoft video-on-demand logoToday, a trademark application in Australia which looks to be for a video-on-demand service from Microsoft yet to be identified has been made available publically. Trademark application #1176435 lodged on May 16 2007 contains an emblem design featuring “arrowheads diverging from disc” which also contains references to a video-on-demand service over internet. The classification provided are as follows:

Class: 9 Computer software for delivery of broadcast-quality video and television programming over broadband, cable, satellite and wireless networks; computer software for providing video-on-demand services; downloadable films and TV programs provided via video-on-demand; computer software for transmitting personal photos, video and music over broadband, cable, satellite and wireless networks; computer software for digital video recording; and computer software for providing a programming guide to display available video and television broadcasts and downloads

Class: 38 Broadcasting services, providing video and television programming over broadband, cable, satellite and wireless networks; and video-on-demand services via broadband networks

Class: 41 Entertainment services; providing information concerning television and video programming; providing online user guides featuring information on television and video programs available over broadband, cable, satellite and wireless networks and available via video-on-demand services; provision of non-downloadable films and TV programs via a video-on-demand service; and distribution of television shows, movies and videos for others

Points to note, the classifications specifically suggest broadcast-quality video, which rules out a YouTube-style video service; downloadable films and TV programs, leads me to think of the iTunes video store; and also personal photos, video and music, a “create-your-own-TV” channel perhaps? If it delivers everything these classifications suggests it would, then Microsoft is on the right track to give the VOD market a little shake.

Microsoft TVCurrently, Microsoft has an IPTV solution on the market ingeniously named Microsoft TV. However, Microsoft TV already has an existing trademark and logo design which suggests this could be a variation of the same service or an entirely different service all-together. Maybe we’ll see a new video-on-demand service similar to Joost from Microsoft this week. Keep your eyes glued.

Update: I’ve contacted Microsoft and Waggener to comment, but they haven’t responded and its 2am here. I’m going to predict they’ll say something like “Microsoft does not comment on rumors or speculations”. In fact, I’ll even bet on it.

Update 2: I’m flattered to have Ars Technica source quote reference appreciate my work on a higher level of appreciation invisible to the naked eye. Although they had problems understanding the difference between VOD and IPTV – they’re two different acronyms for a reason.

Update 3: Microsoft TV’s press agency Weber Shandwick had this to say, “Microsoft regularly files new trademark applications. We have nothing new to announce at this time.” They’re such teasers.

15 insightful thoughts

  1. I’m guessing a rebranding, as Microsoft TV is kinda lame (like Apple TV). Is it just the registering of a trademark, without any kind of additional rumors?

  2. They already have Video on Demand…it’s called Xbox Live Video Marketplace :). I mean, it’s minus the personal photos, etc. part, but it is the number two video download service right behind the iTunes store. Although Classes 38 and 41 do sound a little more like Microsoft TV or some other IPTV solution.

  3. Hey this sounds cool and all, but isn’t the market already crowded enough? If they’re going to release something that similiar to what you say, they better do a good job, or it will probaly go down as another Microsoft failure. Not that I want it to be or anything.

    Long, there’s something I want to ask you. Why don’t you ever close your quotes? About every time I see you refer to a quote, it’s never closed. Why don’t you close them? I’m not trying to criticize you or anything, I’m just curious.

  4. Hope it works better than Joost.

    With a 1 Mbps ADSL link I get at lot of lag while watching videos.
    I think streaming hi-quality content with P2P with regular ADSL links it’s still quite difficult!

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