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Xbox SmartGlass Allows for Mobile Console Control
Microsoft’s new app will let iOS and Android device users control their Xbox 360s and add new content to movies and games.
LOS ANGELES—Microsoft today unveiled Xbox SmartGlass, which will tie together Xbox content with devices on iOS and Android, as well as other platforms.
At its E3 press conference here, Redmond showed quick switching between Xbox 360, tablets, and smartphones, with the mobile devices offering additional information while users watched television. The presentation showed Game of Thrones on an HDTV, while a tablet connected through Xbox SmartGlass showed a map of the land where the action took place.
Xbox SmartGlass will also extend to games, with integration similar to the Nintendo Wii U’s “Nintablet.” Concept video showed Madden NFL 13 letting users call plays on their tablets through Xbox SmartGlass, and seamlessly switching between online and multplayer games in Halo 4 with the tablet as a game browser.
The Xbox interface will add smartphone and tablet control through Xbox SmartGlass. Remote control functionality will supplement Kinect voice and gesture control, letting users control their systemsthrough their mobile devices.
Xbox will also finally get its own version of Internet Explorer, giving the system a long-awaited Web browser. It will also support Kinect control, with voice commands to navigate between pages. Thedesign seems similar to Windows 8 software, with the same tile-based interface as Xbox Live. Xbox SmartGlass also turns smartphones and tablets into touchpads to control the Web browser.
The Xbox SmartGlass app for all major mobile platforms and Internet Explorer for Xbox 360 will be released this fall.
By Will Greenwald, PCMag