Long long ago, in a planet called Earth, there were the Xbox faction, and the Playstation 4 faction. On November 2013, the month marked the launch of both the Xbox One and the Playstation 4 to the masses. The next-gen has now changed to the current gen while everything that is current is now old.
Long story short, Xbox One was not the popular compared to the PS4.
Then again, it never really got off when it was announced during E3 2013.
Polygon wrote a great write up of Microsoft's past promises to gamers everywhere, and broke nearly all of it. From Kinect being integral, to now becoming "The Premium Experience", one wonders what the heck was Microsoft thinking of in the first place.
Did it want to repeat the success that it did with the Xbox 360's Kinect? Of course. (It is after all the best selling peripheral during any peripheral's first launch week) But what made them want to think that it was NECESSARY to have a Kinect in every single Xbox One?
Frankly speaking, motion control was dead for a while now. No doubt the Wii is still, and will be, the best selling console of the last gen. Any smart businessman knows that if you wanna be successful, copy the next guy (at least in the gaming business that is. Think of how many times of evolution has Nintendo consistently offered, and got ripped off?). But what was the Kinect anyways? An Eye Toy rip off or a "better" Wii Remote?
You know what's more sad? Getting the focus entirely wrong.
The Xbox One did a lot of things right (and great too). I love the idea of an all in one media center that I can connect my local cable channel to. I love doing my own custom media guide. I love not having to leave my couch if I want to watch the next Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist episode from Machinima. All that, and so much more is possible with the Xbox One.
But I have only 1 wish that I truly wished Microsoft gave more thought on, or poured their whole money in:
Voice Recognition or Control.
What truly drew this Nintendo fanboy into the Xbox One was never the Kinect, was never the launch games (I'll admit that I love Killer Instinct, but that's me being biased), but has and always will be the Voice Recognition or Control (I'm gonna shorten this to "Voice").
Voice is a tech that I have always wanted to have since Star Trek/Knight Rider made it popular. When it comes to the next level of user interface, I am a firm believer of using my voice to control everything. Remember how Captain Picard always recorded his Star Log onboard the Enterprise? Or just how Michael Knight was talking to Kitt while he's driving? Or a more recent example, how we would all LOVE to talk to JARVIS (of Iron Man fame) or even to Samantha (Scarlett Johansson of Her fame, but note, this movie is not for kids) while she arranges my life?
Why couldn't Microsoft just worked on that? Seriously, that would have been enough.
The Kinect could still be the Premium experience vision that Microsoft wants. But voice should have been the IT thing. Heck, even during the announcement of the USD399 Xbox One, it was also included that gamers were using an average of 120 voice commands a month. But there was no comment on how many gamers were actually moving their hands around to use the camera. (One still wonders why they calculate this data. The Zombies being killed is the worst)
So with that much boast and usage of voice, don't you think that should have been the focus?
I remember the moment that I did my first hands on with the Xbox One. And I'll be honest, there is no better nor sheer pleasure, than seeing the glow of the Xbox logo light up when you say "Xbox On". I welcome the day that we get to call our Xbox by a certain name (IWATA ON! Wait a minute...) or to have more commands for it (Xbox, please tell Cortana to remind me to pick up Halo: Guardians on launch date). Cortana is now getting good reception for the Windows Phone. Isn't it time for the Xbox to get a good point as well?
This would be the biggest wishful thinking that I have from Microsoft, but it's something that I would love to hear during E3 2014. It would be great to learn that besides the Xbox One is back to being a gaming machine, it will also release a separate Microphone peripheral that will be the future Voice interface. It would make so many squad games better (Gears of War 4 would be a great future example) and the unnecessary need of having a Kinect while wanting voice. heck, pack it in for an extra 30dollars (Optional) or sell it separately for another 50 bucks. Let gamers decide if this is necessary (and why wouldn't they? The Xbox360 packed a whole lot of headsets anyways).
Before this drags on too long and seeing as how Voice may just be the future that gamers will embrace, let us pray that Voice is a tech that Microsoft can focus on. And maybe for Nintendo to steal it this time. (As if. :P)
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