Hot on the heels of arch-competitor Google—whose YouTube subsidiary recently opened a massive video studio in Los Angeles—Microsoft has also made a bid to solidify its position in the video industry with its own L.A. production facility. According to TechCrunch, the software giant recently staffed up its Santa Monica studio with 150 employees, who will focus on creating content for the company's popular Xbox Kinect platform.
As Nancy Tellem, the studio's brand-new corporate VP, is quoted in the story, “We’re in a unique position to produce content with a much higher level of interactivity. Everyone is very different, particularly when you look at the younger demo—Interactivity is a natural extension of what they do.” According to TechCrunch, Microsoft has sold about 75 million Kinect consoles worldwide and has over 45 million Xbox Live subscribers—and users spend an average of 87 hours per month playing Xbox games.
As for other video producers who may be frightened by Microsoft's increased emphasis on online video, TechCrunch has reassuring words: “One thing that Microsoft is not interested in doing is becoming a cable competitor by building bundles of content. Part of that is about being friendly to content companies and distributors that deliver video over its devices. Part of it is also not feeling like it can provide real value by being a virtual cable provider.”
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