Wednesday, March 22, 2023

“Gaming is emerging as the third pillar of entertainment”

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On the other hand, because Kinect is controller-free, you don’t need to buy additional controllers once you buy a Kinect.

What could be the other uses for such kind of man-machine interface?
Right upfront you had things like DOS where you interacted through just typing keystrokes. Then you had GUI (graphical user interface) which used a mouse through which you could drag and drop. Kinect is something which we call NUI or natural user interface. It goes beyond GUI. Literally, it uses voice, gestures, emotions, etc to control or interact with machines. Little before Kinect, we had Surface—a form of NUI.

Kinect is probably the best and the most popular form of NUI. Gaming is the first killer app of Kinect. We are pretty much sure that going forward it can extend to many more different form factors and scenarios. It could extend to PCs, mobile phones, etc. And beyond gaming, it could go to education, productivity, healthcare and entertainment.

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Even with Kinect for the Xbox, you can play movies without a controller. You can do Video Kinect without a controller. That is, without using your hands, you can play on the Xbox with someone in another city through Xbox LIVE. Because Kinect is a camera, you can actually video chat with each other while playing. You can also create a gaming avatar with your hand and dress it up.

So it has already started to go beyond gaming and can go across devices and scenarios.

Why is Microsoft not keen on adding Blu-ray player in its Xbox 360?
Well, the Xbox console does support high-definition (HD). Most of the games are HD and if you have an HD TV, the movies that you see through Xbox LIVE are HD. As a console, we see the Xbox as an entertainment and gaming platform. We have lots of movies on the console—in fact, more movies can be seen through Xbox LIVE than any other player. Actually, it’s a far better and futuristic way to get movies where you connect through the Xbox. Just download movies on the Xbox and play in HD. We don’t really see why we should be putting in a drive in the console and increasing its cost.

After Kinect, what is your next area of focus in console gaming?
Kinect is a far-reaching innovation. At Microsoft, we have decided to focus on the family gaming bit and the motion gaming bit for the near future. You will see more and more games coming on the Xbox which are family-friendly. You will also see more and more features like Video Kinect being added to Kinect and Kinect extending to more and more scenarios.

Finally, what do you suggest to those planning to buy a gaming console?
First of all, gaming consoles today have gone beyond gaming. So buyers should look at buying a gaming and entertainment system. For example, consider what you need when you are at home—you need something to play games on, watch movies, play music, play with many people across the world and hence be part of a network, do social networking, etc. Also ascertain whether you want the console for one-person hard-core gaming or for the family.



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