The CW network and Microsoft have joined forces to bring the former's fan-favorite melodrama to Xbox Live.
I have a confession to make: I love The Vampire Diaries. I know, I know. As a twentysomething male I'm not exactly the target demographic for the show, but after my girlfriend exposed me to the high-stakes drama only found in the world of oversexed immortal bloodsuckers and the witches who love/hate/murder them, I was hooked. So, as odd it as it to say this, I'm actually pretty excited to see that The CW network is getting its own Xbox Live app.
Debuting today, the app functions similarly to almost any other network-specific Xbox Live media apps available on Microsoft's console. Assuming you have an Xbox Live Gold membership, you're able to use the app to watch clips, previews and full episodes of various CW programs, most importantly, The Vampire Diaries, whether or not your local cable provider offers them.
Oh, but perhaps you think this focus on TVD comes entirely from my affection for the show? Not at all. The CW's own press release focuses heavily on the program to tout its special features. Dig it:
In addition, The CW is taking advantage of the second-screen opportunities offered by Xbox SmartGlass to create a content-rich, interactive and integrated experience that will bring "The Vampire Diaries" to fans in an entirely new way. As viewers tune into The CW app on Xbox this Friday for the latest episode titled "The Originals," they can access an exclusive Xbox SmartGlass experience that will provide exciting new content via their smartphone or tablet not available to any other viewers. Experiences and content that can only be discovered using the Xbox SmartGlass experience includes:
- A map that follows the characters through town, revealing events throughout the town's history
- Biographies of each character
- Legends and lore of New Orleans and the world of "The Vampire Diaries"
So, not only is the CW app a media portal, saving you from ever having to interact with your cable company, it's also the latest effort to take advantage of the largely-ignored SmartGlass functionality of the Xbox 360, which Microsoft debuted at E3 2012 before seemingly forgetting all about it. As with most SmartGlass applications, the utility of this effort is likely going to be small, and most people will forget it exists after an hour or so, but if nothing else it should offer a bit more interactivity for die-hard fans of The Vampire Diaries. Meaning: Me, and your teenaged sister.
You can find the CW app on the Xbox Live Marketplace right now, and the whole thing can be yours for the very attractive price of absolutely free.
Source: Major Nelson