MSN Spaces, Meet XBOX 360

I’ve been meaning to write this for about six months now, but a picture over on Marc’s blog today finally motivated me:

While I agree with much of what Marc wrote in his post, that’s not really the point of this post. Rather, the point is the advanage that Microsoft has (over Sony) in tying “entertainment consumption and achievments” to personal publishing, through a ubiquitous identity system.

It’s not hard to imagine XBOX 360 flowing a gamer’s “verified” high scores, feats, wins, etc to their MSN Spaces ‘blog’. Think Google Video, then think 3 minute snipets from a duel or frag fest (along with the necessary “I rOxOred u” smack talk) published to Spaces; the only thing better than winning is showing off your moves to the entire world in perpituity, no?

Of course, the XBOX 360 isn’t all about gaming; it’s also going to be about photos, music, movies and more. This meta-data (music playlists, movies watched/reviewed/rated, etc) can and likely will automatically find its way to Spaces (where the user can selective chose what gets published and who can see it).

And, “that’s not all”… Like Yahoo, Microsoft has a broad suite of services tied to a core identity; think MSN Music, Shopping, etc. Heck, we already heard about Microsoft Virtual Earth being tied to Spaces.

Marc (like many of us) of course groks this; he calls such applications DLAs — Digital Lifestyle Aggregators — and is helping become a meta container app, into which disparate data from innumerable sources flow. This gives Tribe a huge advantage; it’s completely open and customizable. It also gives it a huge disadvantage; it’s not turnkey (integrated), which raises the bar on required user sophistication. MSN Spaces, like it or not, has been (seemingly) successful by, as Torres says, keeping it simple, and shows no signs of opening up (broadly) to third party services.

Yahoo’s position is similar to Microsoft’s, as I wrote the other day when commenting on Yahoo’s Movie Recommendation Engine, though minus the living room presence. (Perhaps someone over at Yahoo! will give Sony a call and try to get PlayStation 3 tied to Yahoo’s ID? Hmmm…)

Like I said, none of this is really new thinking; most of us have been thinking about it since SOAP, UDDI, WSDL, etc flipped a bit… many more since first groking XML, CDF and RSS years before that. That’s not all that interesting.

The interesting question is… are you thinking about how your company fits into this evolving ecosystem, how you can benefit your customers, and how your traditional revenue streams will need to evolve?

I’d love to hear your thoughts, worries, and dreams (here, your blog or privately).

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