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12 million downloads in less than a year and, due to this popularity, major publishers and other independent gamers had submitted more than 1,000 Xbox Live games.23Kinect for Xbox 360In November 2010 Microsoft introduced Kinect for Xbox 360, which was based around a webcam-style add-on peripheral for the Xbox 360 console. It enabled users to control and interact with the Xbox 360 using gestures and spoken commands, without the need to touch a game controller. Kinect allowed the Xbox 360 to “see” the user and act according to the user’s motions and gestures. This took the concept of the Wii and pursued it to its natural culmination, making the user the game controller. Kinect used software technology that enabled advanced gesture recognition, facial recognition, and voice recognition. Some critics believed that the concept used by Kinect had potential far beyond games and might even become a new way of controlling computers of all kinds. It automatically identified who one player was and paused when the player left its vicinity, so it was not hard to imagine this ingenuity controlling all kinds of devices, such as a PC, smartphone, or tablet.24Xbox Next GenerationWhile little information had been officially released about the next-generation Xbox, some assumptions could be made. Media outlets had been leading heavy discussion regarding the consoles’ seemingly certain release in time for the 2013 holiday season, putting it in direct competition with Sony’s PlayStation 4. With both Sony and Nintendo making headway in the motion-detecting department, Microsoft would certainly do the same, either improving upon its Kinect or investing in a new device, similar to Sony’s approach. Microsoft recently filed a patent relating to projecting augmented reality 3-D images onto the walls of the room the user was gaming in, in an effort to more fully immerse the user in the experience. With the code name “Fortaleza,” this project had the basis of the Kinect technology at its core. While still speculative, it was sup-posedly going to work with Wi-Fi–enabled glasses, similar to Google’s Project Glass glasses.25Sony PlayStation 4While no pricing had been set, there was a lot that was known about the PlayStation 4. The PS4 would include 8 GB des78212_case24_184-193.indd 1915/22/15 5:38 PM
First PagesC192 CASE 24 :: NINTENDO’S WII Udepending on whether one counted backward compatibil-ity with previous-generation games. The number of games indicated that the Wii was obviously a successful system—one that had drawn a good amount of interest from game developers and gamers around the world.However, with Microsoft shipping record number of Kinect units within the first few months of its release, some analysts started predicting that the Nintendo’s dom-inance in video game consoles was over. Microsoft and Sony had started to invade the casual family-user mar-ket, a key market for Nintendo’s Wii, expanding beyond their former customer base of mainly hard-core gamers.