Yes, we are now living in the future, finally. Microsoft announced at E3 2011 that Kinect owners will finally be able to expand their simple voice commands to a whole new level, enabling users to search with their voice and eschewing controllers.
The technology is made available by integrating Microsoft’s Bing search engine into Xbox 360, which will enable users to search Netflix, Hulu Plus, ESPN, Xbox LIVE Marketplace, and media libraries simultaneously with the just sound of their voice. Kinect users will be pleased to know that their laziness levels can be taken to brand new heights.
In addition to the jump in technology, Xbox 360 will also be including new media services for users: YouTube and UFC. UFC has partnered with Microsoft to deliver live matches, classic fights, interviews, and behind the scenes video straight to the Xbox 360. No word yet if full UFC events will be available through this service, but the likely answer would be “no,” if only because streaming live events would probably put a dent in UFC earnings through pay-per-view.
The inclusion of YouTube is a significant addition, allowing users to watch all kinds of web content straight from their Xbox 360. Whether or not users will have access to the entire YouTube search library, or only a partial version, has not been answered yet.
All of a sudden, the value of a Kinect has gone up significantly. The addition of voice searching on Xbox 360 jumps the convenience level and increases the console’s viability as an inclusive entertainment source, and not just a video game console. Of course, PlayStation 3 has been promoting that agenda since it released, though to mixed success.
Convenience doesn’t end with voice searching. Xbox 360 will also be adding cloud saving, allowing users to save game data and gamertags online. Kinect is also still a viable tool for games as well, as it will be present in Mass Effect 3 in a big way.
Will this news motivate you to go out and buy a Kinect?
Stay tuned to Game Rant for more news and updates as E3 2011 continues through the week.
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