A revolution has started in the living room since the Xbox 360 has been released on the market, transforming the way people enjoy TV and entertainment and giving them the power to control it with their own voice. And ever since Steve Jobs pointed in the direction of the iTV there have been a frenzy of rumors and speculation as to what this sort of device could embed.
It doesn’t seem far fetched to theorize that Microsoft has somehow beaten Apple to it, with the new Xbox 360 that brings voice-activated features to the Kinect. You weren’t actually expecting Siri to be left alone in the world, were you?
So using this update you will be able to trade in the Xbox’s familiar tabbed interface for the Metro look that builds around tiles. This tiles all sit neatly arranged behind menu headings which mark different categories. For example, behind the “social” tile you’ll find the options for Facebook, Twitter or Kinect video calls. Kinect Integration means that the remote control for the new Cloud storage feature become your voice and gestures.
If you’re in the mood to watch some TV, the services will become available if you look behind the Apps menu, but the silly part is that only Gold members of Xbox Live will be able to access them. Yes, brace yourselves, extra fees, are coming. But think about it. Thanks to the Kinect device, you can use your voice to get basically whatever you want. Fancy a video game? Just say “Skyrim” and it would be enough. Want to see a movie? Here you go.
The idea of voice controlled television is pretty darn interesting, but we hope it will not translate into people becoming total couch potatoes. So far, about 35 million of the 57 million Xbox consoles users are connected to Xbox Live.