Hi, Bryan Here….
At the E3 conference this year, Microsoft did NOT unveil the much anticipated XBOX 720. We are hearing they will announce the new console sometime next year. But, Microsoft did not let their current 360 model go to waste this year. There are some very cool, new features that were added. Microsoft introduced ‘SmartGlass‘, some new features in the sports area, new games, new apps, music, and more.
Let’s talk about SmartGlass first. With Xbox SmartGlass, you can use a phone or tablet to enhance your games and entertainment experience on Xbox 360. You can use your phone or tablet to control what you’re seeing on TV and easily explore the internet on your TV using your phone or tablet to browse, scroll, pinch, and zoom. Start playing one of your favorite shows, music, sports or games on a device and move it to your TV to keep watching on the big-screen. The Xbox SmartGlass app is available on Windows Phone or tablet, and the innovative Xbox SmartGlass technology is available on other major platforms in the My Xbox app. This is a great concept, however most people I know have iPhones. There needs to be an app for the Mac OSX line for it to survive. But I like where microsoft is going on this, and I expect the Sony and or Mac to do something similar.
Now onto the sports category. If you already own an xbox, you should know by now that if you have a Gold Membership to Xbox Live, you can watch any sports game that is broadcast on ESPN. Live or on Demand. This an awesome feature, especially for college sports fans. ESPN has now added 24/7 live programming from all of the ESPN networks through WatchESPN – including ESPN, ESPN 2, ESPN 3 and ESPN U. All the favorites, including SportsCenter, SportsNation, The Mike and Mike Show, as well as ESPN’s coverage of the NFL, MLB and the NBA are now live, all in HD, all on Xbox 360. So if you are a huge ESPN fan, this should warm the cockles. Also, you should know by now that the UFC and XBOX have been united for quite sometime now, where you can watch UFC events on your xbox. Well others have joined in the action. Now the NBA, NHL, and the MLB have joined forces with XBOX. That’s right. You can watch basketball, hockey, and baseball live on your xbox now. Maybe next year the NFL will join. And maybe, just maybe the NCAA will join up soon too. Huge news for sports lovers and fans of xbox.
XBOX has revamped their music section. Let’s face it, it’s still not as good as iTunes, but it’s a step in the right direction. Their new Smart DJ helps you discover new music by creating playlists around the artists you love. Plus, the new Xbox music is social, meaning you can stay plugged into what your friends are listening to. I won’t be doing this portion, but those few people out there who are still fans of the Zune, this is for you.
In a laughable announcement from Microsoft and Xbox, they will be an internet search engine on xbox now. That engine will be Internet Explorer. You will be able to explore the web on your TV in an amazing way with Kinect and Internet Explorer for Xbox and use your voice to explore your favorite sites with the ease on the biggest screen in the house. You can even use your phone or tablet to type, zoom in and out, scroll and control your experience. This made me laugh. Who honestly uses Internet Explorer anymore? I don’t see this going well as Explorer will crash constantly.
That’s basically it for XBOX 360 this year. Some really cool ideas, but I think next year, we will get an all new console with all of these features added plus hopefully a bluray player and not an HD-DVD player in the new XBOX. Your thoughts?