AT&T puts U-verse TV on Xbox on indefinite hiatus

Hoping to use an Xbox to access AT&T's (NYSE: T) U-verse TV? You may be in for a bit of a wait, as the telco has pulled the hardware kit that allowed users to use the game console as a "spare" set-top box.

The $99 kit (plus a $55 installation fee for existing users) enabled subscribers to access DVR recordings, switch from games to TV without switching video inputs, use U-verse applications, access the U-verse TV menu and guide, and use Xbox IM and chat with your friends while watching TV.

A note on AT&T's website said, "We apologize, but the AT&T U-verse TV for Xbox 360 Hardware Kit is not currently available for ordering.... Please check back regularly for availability and new features."

An AT&T spokeswoman told FierceIPTV that the company was "in the process of enhancing the U-verse on Xbox 360 functionality, adding that the telco hoped to "have more updates and news to share on these enhancements soon. To ensure our new customers have the best possible experience, the kits will not be available until the new enhancements and functionality are added."

The kit first appeared in October 2010 and contained a Motorola HomePNA adapter, a Microsoft media remote control, and installation CD and user guide.

AT&T said the decision was made "to ensure our new customers have the best possible experience."

The company said the kits wouldn't be available until new enhancements and functionality are added.

Subscribers who are using the Xbox also need an Xbox Live Gold account, a U-verse TV subscriptions, at least one standard receiver and U-verse High-Speed Internet.

AT&T hasn't disclosed how many subscribers currently use the Xbox as a set top box for U-verse.

Last week, Netflix (Nasdaq: NFLX) complained that AT&T's policy of not charging users overage fees in connection with using the Xbox feature violated the Federal Communications Commission's net neutrality rules. AT&T otherwise has a 250-Gigabyte monthly cap on U-verse Internet users.

For more:
- see this Game Politics article
- see this Engadget article
- see this Multichannel News article

Related articles:
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FiOS, U-verse add subs, and Verizon looks long on TVE
AT&T reports 5.2% earnings bump, tops 4M U-verse TV subs

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