Xbox One Gets an Over-The-Air TV Tuner, No Monthly Fee Required
Soon you'll be able to watch broadcast networks like CBS, Fox, NBC and PBS on your Xbox One without a subscription to a cable service provider.
The Xbox Wire has announced that the Xbox One will be expanding its TV-viewing options. This will come in the form of the system supporting USB-based TV tuners. One example of this is the new Hauppauge TV Tuner, which is getting its own Xbox One version soon, retailing for $59.99. This HDTV antennae will give you over-the-air TV coverage, which includes your basic cable channels, such as CBS, Fox, NBC and PBS, without the need for any kind of subscription or monthly fee. Combined with Sling TV, which adds ESPN, TNT, Disney, Adult Swim and other channels, as well as on-demand apps like Netflix, HBO GO, Comedy Central, Hulu Plus and Amazon Prime, Xbox is really trying to circumvent the need for its users to subscribe to major cable providers like Comcast or DirecTV.
The Xbox One Digital TV Tuner is also expanding its support to an additional 11 European countries, such as Austria, Belgium Finland, Ireland, Norway and more. In terms of most antennae-based tuners, the channels you have access to will obviously depend on your location. Going to gomohu.com/xbox and inputting your zip code will let you see what kind of channels you could get (I had 46 available). Most of these channels will be accessible with the Hauppage Tuner. After you have your tuner and antenna, you just set up your antenna somewhere in your place by your Xbox One, connect it to the tuner and plug it into the USB port in the back of your console.
Watching over-the-air TV on an Xbox One gives you full access to the other TV tricks you can do with your console, such as TV viewing in Snap Mode, OneGuide viewing, the ability to pause, customizable favorites lists and Kinect Voice Commands for channel changing. You can even use the SmartGlass app on your phone to change the channel or set your volume. Things are certainly getting really interesting, as Microsoft is trying to make the Xbox One your go-to center of home entertainment.