For those that live in Seattle, you might have noticed the bird-like tumor growing on the Space Needle. Upon closer examination, you'll realize it's an Angry Bird. You might be asking yourself, what's going on? Well, it’s all for the sake of marketing.
The popular mobile game, Angry Birds, has taken over our phones, toys, apparel, a racing team, and now the city of Seattle. The 35-foot suspended bird, held by a T-Mobile slingshot, is a part of a marketing scheme to promote the newly themed game, Angry Birds Space, which was released on March 22.
Peter Vesterback went on the record saying, “We wanted to do all things space and Seattle is famous for the Space Needle, so that’s why we’re here.”
Sadly, the bird won't be launched from the Space Needle, but nevertheless, it stirred up quite a bit of media buzz around the Emerald City.
Read More | Seattle PI
We're back with another edition of Ask Andru - this time we're focusing on the wildly popular Kinect add-on, and how useful it might be for Xbox 360 owners who primarily use their consoles for watching streaming video. On to the question:
My family has an Xbox 360 but we end up using it primarily for Netflix, not games. I've read that the recent Xbox Live update added more ways to navigate menus and content using voice and gestures with Kinect. Is it worth buying a Kinect just for those controls, if we don't use it to play games? Is talking and waving at the TV better than using the controller?
It's true--Microsoft recently released an update for the Xbox 360, known as the Fall 2011 Dashboard Update, that has fully optimized the console's interface for use alongside the Kinect add-on. Many early adopters of Kinect complained about how clunky and tacked on the experience felt when trying to navigate menus while using the Xbox 360 outside of gaming, and the update pretty much solved all of those problems. Now, it's easy to "grab" something on screen, swipe through menus, and make selections using hand gestures. Even cooler, though, is that the dashboard is now pretty much fully navigable using just your voice. Simply say "Xbox" and all your options for where you can go are displayed on the screen. If you can see it, you can pretty much say it. Here's a video I made that looks at the features you'll find in the latest update:
Last week, as some know, Valve released its mobile steam app for the App Store and Android Marketplace in beta mode. Now, it's open and available to all. Go pick up the Steam app today from either store for free if you want to give it a try.
Looking to pick up a 12-month Xbox Live Gold subscription on the cheap? Head on over to Amazon right now to grab one for 40% off. Seriously, you'll pay $35 instead of the typical $60, and you get access to stuff like Netflix, Hulu Plus, ESPN, and much more on your Xbox 360. Even if you're in the middle of a subscription, you can just get one and extend whatever time you have left by another year.
Don’t forget, if you’re looking for other deals, be sure to check out our Newegg Promo Code thread. Oh, and if you're on Twitter, be sure to follow @TechPromos for the latest deals, or you can Like TechPromos on Facebook.
Economics professors and Psych teachers are no longer needed. Full Sail University, “an innovative educational leader” located just outside of Orlando, FL is accepting applications for a new teaching position: “Course Director of Developing New Worlds position in its Creative Writing Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree Program.”
And what’s a Course Director then?
“Course Directors are instructors who ensure excellence in teaching skills and classroom content. They develop curriculum, teach, and oversee the integrity of their classes.”
But what’s all that about “Developing New Worlds”?
Read More | Full Sail University
In the battle against The Covenant, the soldiers of Halo are looking for... a Consumer Products Category Manager.
That’s right, recruit. Microsoft Studios/343 Industries needs a marketing person to “manage the development and execution of all 3D licensed merchandise, including product planning and execution, retail programs and quality control.”
If you need reminding: “The Halo Franchise is a multibillion dollar entertainment franchise, spanning multiple product categories including games, collectibles, toys, novels, comic books, digital goods and apparel. Our product development team is responsible for working with our licensing partners to execute product plans that extend the Halo brand at the highest level of quality.
Read More | Seattle Recruiter
Microsoft also announced a significant number of related content partnerships, bringing most major services to the Xbox platform this week or by early 2012. On Dec. 6, Starting Dec. 6, a free Xbox Companion app for Windows Phone will let also let users find, learn more about and control content from popular entertainment services on Xbox LIVE.
Shortly after midnight on Sunday night, Microsoft said that the "Bing on Xbox" update would arrive on U.S. consoles beginning "tomorrow," and roll out to U.S. console owners over the coming weeks. Those without a Kinect peripheral will be able to search using Bing text search.
The voice search capability, first revealed in June, will work with both the Xbox Live Marketplace, Zune Video, and selected content partners. On Dec. 6, presumably the date of the update, Microsoft plans to add content from new entertainment partners, including apps, from EPIX, ESPN, Hulu Plus, Netflix, and MSNBC's Today.
Microsoft's vision for the Xbox platform, including voice search via Kinect, probably was more significant six months ago before Apple's Siri began dominating headlines with its ability to naturally search and interact with the user and a variety of apps. Nevertheless, it allows users to interact with a growing sea of content as simply as possible.
The next major Xbox 360 dashboard update happens on December 6th, and we’ve got a look at all the new changes and additions in this episode of Bleeding Edge TV. The Fall 2011 Xbox 360 Dashboard Update is the official name of this release, and we show you the update process, and then walk you through the new interface. We give you a look at new features like Bing, Cloud Storage for games and profiles, the new Social, Games, Movies, and Music channels, and more. Expect good things from Microsoft's latest update, including full Kinect integration. This is a big update that brings another big redesign to the Xbox 360, similar to what they did a couple years ago with the New Xbox Experience. Things are a lot more flat...even boxy. It's somewhat similar to the Metro UI that you’d find on Windows Phone 7 devices or Windows 8, and the synergy is understandable…plus, it makes things a lot more user-friendly as it pertains to Kinect.
Big thank you to GoToMeeting and JackThreads for sponsoring the show - be sure to check them out! As for JackThreads, we've got exclusive invite codes that give you $5 to use towards anything you'd like.
Amazon has a great deal on the Kinect going today. While supplies last, you can get the Kinect sensor with three games included for $125 - that's $25 less than Kinect sells for without the extra games. The titles are Kinect Adventures, Fruit Ninja Kinect, and The Gunstringer. Go and grab it now!
Microsoft's been hyping up Kinect for over a year now, and we've been enjoying the motion sensing Xbox peripheral for just as long. Our verdict? We love it, and it feels like the future. This is why we're adding it to our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide. If you know anyone with an Xbox 360 console who doesn't have Kinect, then we'd recommend putting this one on your gift list. The Kinect sensor costs $149.99, and includes Kinect Adventures, a disc full of mini-games that let you try out a bunch of Kinect's features.It also includes download token codes for Fruit Ninja Kinect and Gunstringer, two Xbox Live Arcade Kinect titles. You can also do video chat with other Kinect users and Windows Live users as well, and you get voice control over your Xbox 360. Seriously, this is the video game accessory to have this holiday season--especially during your holiday parties with friends and family around.
Aside from the sensor itself, here are a few Kinect games that we think are worth picking up as well:
- Dance Central 2
- Kinect Sports Season 2
- Sesame Street: Once Upon a Monster
- Forza Motorsport 4
- Your Shape Fitness Evolved
Read More | Kinect