Xbox SmartGlass will be integrated with Windows 8

Today at the E3 conference in Los Angeles, Microsoft introduced Xbox SmartGlass.

Here’s what Yusuf Mehdi, chief marketing officer for Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business had to say about SmartGlass:

“SmartGlass takes all of your devices and first makes them all work together, and second works in concert with your Xbox to unleash a whole bunch of new scenarios,” Mehdi says. “Imagine being on the couch and watching a show or a game and having your tablet suddenly light up with information, and as things occur in the show, the tablet updates. It’s really, really cool.”

SmartGlass means using your tablet to draw up a play in the Xbox 360 “Madden Football” game before watching the play executed to perfection on your television. SmartGlass means watching a movie and being presented with bonus features and related content on your phone or tablet without having to lift a finger.

With Internet Explorer coming to Xbox, SmartGlass also means exploring and controlling your favorite websites on your TV with a swipe, pinch or zoom on your tablet or phone’s touchscreen.

“In the past when people have tried to put a Web browser on the TV, the experience has always been difficult to navigate,” says Lisa Worthington, senior public relations manager for Microsoft’s Interactive Entertainment Business. “You need to have something to input text easily, but keyboards and mice don’t really belong in the living room and using a remote is awkward.”

With SmartGlass, people can now use their phone or tablet to type text, pinch and zoom, and even pin their favorite sites directly to the Xbox dashboard.

The E3 demo was interesting because it showed the ability for SmartGlass to show (on your tablet or phone) information about the movie playing on your TV while you watched it.

It looked cool as a concept but it remains to be seen how many people really want to deal with 3 or 4 media sources at the same time in the living room.

It’s like 3D TV. It sounded great in theory but when it came right down to it, consumers weren’t really into the gimmick.

Time will tell with this one.

What about you? Do you think SmartGlass is something you will use going forward on a regular basis?

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