Ntl wins Xbox Live broadband deal

UK Xbox owners will be able to go to ntl, Telewest or BTopenworld to get high-speed Internet connectivity for their console from next March
Written by Graeme Wearden, Contributor

Ntl has joined BTopenworld and Telewest in securing a deal with Microsoft to supply broadband connectivity for Xbox Live.

Xbox Live is Microsoft's forthcoming online gaming service, which it hopes will give it the edge against Sony in the console market. Due to launch in the UK in March 2003, it will let gamers compete against each other across the Internet, as well as giving access to new characters and levels.

As ZDNet UK reported on Tuesday, BTopenworld is the only company offering ADSL-based broadband to secure an Xbox Live deal so far.

Ntl believes that it will provide a better service, though. While BTopenworld's consumer broadband product runs at a maximum of 512kbps, ntl offers a 1Mbps service as well as its 600kbps service. These products, ntl claims, will make for a better gaming experience.

"It's game on for ntl's broadband customers. The launch of Xbox live is a shot in the arm for the Broadband Britain," said Bill Goodland, director of Internet at ntl, in a statement.

Like BTopenworld, ntl plans to sell a connection kit that will allow users to split their broadband connection between their PC and their Xbox. Ntl has also said that users will be able to plug an Xbox into their existing broadband cable modems through the Ethernet port.

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