Microsoft has spent billions convincing people that its Xbox One system can be the ultimate all-in-one home entertainment console. It offers Netflix, Sling TV, HBO Go, Hulu Plus, and a deluge of other ways to watch streaming content. But can it sit back in its La-Z-Boy, unwrap a Werther’s Original, and watch NCIS as it airs on CBS? That was a treat reserved solely for those with traditional broadcast television access—until now. Variety reports that the company has launched an “over-the-air digital TV tuner and antenna function” that will allow users to watch broadcast TV via the Xbox One.
These new-millennium equivalents of rabbit ears—or Hauppauge Digital TV Tuners, as they’re being called—are available for purchase starting today. The tuner is sold in a bundle with a Mohu DTV antenna for $100, or separately for $59.99. And, in case all the kids out there are staring at this and thinking, “The hell’s an antenna?”, Microsoft wants to assure you that its tuner is basically a mini-cable box. Meaning, it will allow you to pause up to thirty minutes of live TV, watch shows as they happen on one side while playing games on the other, or watch TV on other devices using the Xbox app in the home. Just as long as what you want to watch is on NBC, CBS, ABC, Fox, The CW, or good old PBS.
Now, if you’ll excuse us, our knee is acting up again, and Jim Lehrer is about to do his NewsHour on PBS. You kids be safe with your Tamagotchis and Zunes.