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Australian Xbox One entertainment apps announced

Microsoft has announced the initial set of entertainment app partners for the Xbox One, with some notable absences.

At its launch event, Microsoft made it very clearthat it saw the Xbox One as an all-in-one entertainment solution, with gaming just one aspect of the console.

(Credit: Microsoft)

That sentiment echoed the strategy the company has taken with the Xbox 360, which has had a constantly evolving stable of entertainment apps built for it by Microsoft's entertainment partners.

But the Xbox One is designed around a different architecture altogether, so it's been a case of going back to the drawing board for many of those content creators.

Over the weekend, Microsoft revealed what it called the "first wave of TV and entertainment apps" for the Xbox One launch countries. In Australia, there are eight partners:

  • Crackle

  • Machinima


  • Network Ten's tenplay

  • Quickflix

  • SBS On Demand

  • TED

  • Twitch

Additionally, all launch markets will get Xbox Video, Xbox Music and Xbox Fitness, along with Skype, SkyDrive, Upload and Internet Explorer.

There are some notable absences, such as ABC's iView, long-time partner Foxtel (which offers its Foxtel Play service via Xbox 360) and even YouTube. (It was only last month that Microsoft buried the hatchet with Google over its YouTube app for Windows Phone, however, so that last one isn't too surprising, perhaps.)

It's a stark contrast to the US app offering, which includes Netflix, Hulu HD, Fox Now, HBO Go and The NFL on Xbox One, to name just a few.

Microsoft also reiterated that Australia will get a limited set of voice controls via Kinect. The famous "Xbox On" command still won't work at launch in Australia, but some voice commands, including some around Bing Search, will. Microsoft Australia issued a version of this Xbox Wire post that had been edited to provide the most accurate information on the Australian launch experience. According to that document:

You can also start playing your favourite game, find your favourite show and more — with the sound of your voice. Powered by Bing technology, search for games, videos, music and more with voice by simply saying, 'Xbox Bing'. Or say, 'Xbox go to tenplay', 'Xbox play Forza Motorsport 5', 'Xbox go to Music' — it's simple.

Obviously, Xbox One will be an evolving ecosystem, and we'd expect to see many of the Xbox 360 partners and functionality move to the new platform rather quickly. Similarly, we expect that many new apps and functions that we haven't seen before are currently under development.

That said, given the current range of entertainment apps on the 360, this seems like a slightly underwhelming launch offering.

You can read our hardware preview of the Xbox One here.