NFL, Xbox Enhancing Interactive Television Viewing

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By Grant Burkhardt

NEW YORK, NY (AP) - The NFL and Microsoft, through its next generation Xbox console, are combining to enhance interactive TV viewing of pro football games.

Ahead could be the use of tablets on the sidelines by coaches and players, too.

The league and Microsoft announced a multiyear agreement Tuesday in which Xbox will provide fans new viewing innovations, including the ability to interact with live games, Skype video chat with other fans, view statistics, access highlights in real time, and gather fantasy information about players and teams — all on a single screen.

For those who prefer multiple screens, fans can get an even deeper experience on mobile devices and tablets with SmartGlass technology.

Coaches and players on the sidelines at games could wind up using tablets, too, though not before 2014.

The deal is worth $400 million over five years for the NFL, according to a person familiar with the agreement. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because financial details have not been made public.

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