New list of Xbox Live Europe partnersLONDON, 5th March 2003 - Xbox today announced its European roll-out of the Xbox Live Compatibility Programme, partnering with 15 of Europe's leading broadband providers to develop connectivity packages for gamers. The world-wide programme is being introduced in each country prior to a retail launch, ensuring that gamers can find broadband packages that allow them to connect to Xbox Live quickly and intuitively and making it even easier to enjoy the fast-action, always-on broadband gaming experience that is Xbox Live. The new European members join 13 broadband providers from North America and six from Japan in the Compatibility Programme. Xbox is committed to continuing the development of broadband partnerships around the world for Xbox Live and plans to add more members to the Xbox Live Compatibility Programme over the coming months. Launching 14th March at retail in eight European countries, Xbox Live enables Xbox gamers with a broadband connection to find their friends easily; talk to other players during game play through the Xbox Communicator headset; download current statistics, new levels and characters to their Xbox hard drive; and play online. Participating broadband providers will work with Xbox to ensure compatibility of their broadband service with Xbox Live. Programme members will also be developing connectivity packages and co-marketing initiatives with Xbox, working to ensure that connecting to and playing Xbox Live is as intuitive as possible. Members can display the Xbox Live compatibility logo on packaging and promotional materials, so gamers can be assured of a great Live experience. The following broadband providers are the first members of the Xbox Live Compatibility Programme: Belgium Belgacom; Telenet France Wanadoo (previously announced at X02); NOOS (previously announced at X02) Germany An announcement on a major German partner will be made during CeBIT in Hannover, starting March 12th Italy TELECOM ITALIA Spain Telefonica; Auna Sweden TeliaSonera; UPC/chello; B2 Bredband The Netherlands KPN/Planet Internet; UPC/chello UK Telewest Broadband; NTL; BT Openworld (all previously announced at X02) "We're very glad to have Europe's leading broadband providers on board to help us make Xbox Live a reality for gamers," said Robbie Bach. Chief Xbox Officer. "Xbox Live is broadband-agnostic, and Xbox Live will likely work with a gamer's existing broadband service even if it's not part of the programme. But gamers looking to get into Live gaming with the minimum of fuss can look to one of the special offers developed by the Compatibility Programme. Initiatives such as dedicated Live support and specially configured routers will enhance the enjoyment of Live gaming "We'll be looking to add more members to the Xbox Live Compatibility Programme in the coming months and when we launch Xbox Live in other European countries later this year," said Cassius. "We've developed a phased approach enabling us to take the time to build strong relationships within the broadband industry. This is just the beginning, and we'll be expanding these relationships and announcing new ones over the next five years."