With its mind increasingly turned to advertising, Microsoft has decided to put its multi-platform positioning to use as a promotional powerhouse. Lamely dubbed Ignition (good Offspring album, bad mid-90s connotation), the program pimps artists (currently, but don't be surprised to see movies, TV shows, etc.) across Zune, Xbox Live and MSN.
The first artist to make use of Ignition is the UK's Maximo Park (who?) whose album Our Earthly Pleasures and single "Our Velocity" will be available as free downloads on the Zune Marketplace.
While essentially (for now) a hyped-up cross-promotional ad system, the fact that it will offer more (and free) content to users—like music and videos through the Zune and Live Marketplace—is nothing to sneeze at.
More broadly...Microsoft finally leveraging its cross-platform capabilities generally bodes well for us. More content available across more platforms more seamlessly is rarely a bad thing, and hopefully Microsoft will continue pushing in this direction beyond advertising.
What kind of multi-platform content do you guys want to see?