Published on November 12th, 2013 | by Ithika0
XBox One has announced launch day media apps
Ever since its unveiling during the 2013 E3 Microsoft keynote, the Xbox One has touted itself as an all-round entertainment system. With launch only ten days away, it’s good to hear about some of the apps that will make this vision a reality – and the ones that are available in Australia, no less!
As an Australian, I have had my concerns about these entertainment apps – international copyright laws often leave us of the Lucky Country high and dry and not feeling quite so lucky – our hugely conspicuous lack of Netflix, and delayed release (until recently) of exciting TV shows being prime examples. However, it looks like Microsoft has secured quite a few entertainment apps to add to Australian XBone owner’s experience.
Xbox has its own apps, naturally : Xbox Fitness, Xbox Video, Xbox Music, Internet Explorer (oh, goody), Skype, Sky Drive and Upload. In addition to these, there will also be local apps available at launch. These are Ten’s Tenplay, SBS On Demand, and Quickflix. (Hopefully ABC’s iView will be added to this list in short order!) International apps which will work in this sunburnt country include TED, MUZU TV, Twtich, Crackle and Machinima.
Network Ten’s “Tenplay” app sounds like it is a big deal for the television network, as well as Xbox gamers, as it is part of Ten’s “digital evolution” – an initiative which has already started, with web, tablet, mobile and TV versions of the app already available. Although I don’t doubt that this will be an excellent way to streamline your digital TV experience, I do wonder if Microsoft intends to sell the Xbox One as a multimedia system to non-gamers. Since many of the non-gaming apps are already available on most modern entertainment devices, they will have to do some hardcore marketing to get non-gamers to bite their hook.
The Quickflix app, I hope, will fill the aforementioned void left in the Australian viewing experience by our lack of Netflix – as long as release times mirror those enjoyed by our American friends.
Also interesting is the OneGuide, a Kinect-driven gesture and voice command system which I saw for the first time in this beautiful ad on youtube:
(I really love it. “Boyfriend, go to de shop.” Brilliant.) If the Kinect features work as effortlessly as advertised here, it could be a real coup in the way we deal with our entertainment. My only question is – how many voices can the XBone remember, and will it be easy to grief your friends and family with it? Sure, we all know that consoles aren’t just for kids, but the fact remains that a lot of kids will use them
- and all of us with siblings know that as much as we love our brothers and sisters, sometimes we really hate them.
The Biometric sign in – featured at the beginning of the ad, as Jennifer walks up to the couch, also looks quite exciting. Once again, I’m curious to see how this works in the wild, and whether it proves irritating to have that, admittedly rather unobtrusive, welcome tag pop up whenever a recognised user approaches. I’m not nay-saying, here – I love the futuristic thinking and innovation implicit in these features, but I do wonder how well they will function out of the box.
All in all, the Xbox One is looking like a more and more exciting system for prospective owners – a true and well defined step up from the Xbox 360. We’ll keep you covered as more news unfolds, and of course, don’t forget to check in with us on Launch day for a Perth-based feature!