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Advertising Microsoft XBox (Games) Games

Microsoft Integrating Xbox One Advertising With Kinect To Profile Users For Ads 300

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the bleating-like-sheep dept.
MojoKid writes "When Microsoft reversed its Xbox One DRM policies a few weeks back, there was momentary hope that the company has listened to its customers and understood the features they were asking for. Granted, this was brief. However, with Mattrick gone, there was some hope that maybe the company would reintroduce plans like Family Sharing and put the console back on track. Apparently not. Microsoft's big new feature with Kinect? Advertising. Microsoft plans to use Kinect to make advertisements even more engaging than their current counterparts. In the future, Kinect may offer you a 'Choose Your Own Adventure' style narrative in which you speak commands or give orders to an ad as it's playing to change the final outcome. The other way Microsoft wants to use Kinect is to monitor what's going on in the living room to serve you group-appropriate content, rather than resorting to the plain old method of bombarding you with non-interactive advertising for things you don't care about. Microsoft will likely learn that telling gamers that the Xbox One is an ad-centric experience and attempting to spin it like a positive doesn't actually work."
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Microsoft Integrating Xbox One Advertising With Kinect To Profile Users For Ads

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  • Great (Score:4, Funny)

    by Hsien-Ko (1090623) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:05PM (#44200579)
    Slimfast and match.com is gonna be appearing on most I bet.

    And before anyone claims Sony doesn't do this already, you've already got little promotional boxes and ads after you've booted up and automatically logged into your PSN on your PS3.
    • by SuperKendall (25149) on Saturday July 06, 2013 @01:46AM (#44201479)

      Slimfast and match.com is gonna be appearing on most I bet.

      Don't forget about the possibility of ads from local chiropractors!

      It can play the moment you put your back out.

      "Hi, this is Kinect Bob. I see you are screaming in agony and prone on the floor, would you like me to contact Dr. Friendly for you? Twitch to the left for YES".

    • by GNious (953874)

      Sony might "do this already", but difference between my PS3 and my XBox360 is that I loathe how 90% of the stuff on the screen of my XBox360 (upon logging in) are various ads...

  • Evil. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:07PM (#44200589)

    Will not buy.

    • Re:Evil. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by causality (777677) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:40PM (#44200801)

      Will not buy.

      Neither will I.

      If there are advertisements, then the hardware and games should be free. If the user is paying for the hardware and games, there should be no advertisements.

      I have this distant hope that gamers will learn the lesson taught to us by cable TV. Originally cable TV was ad-free on the basis that you were paying a fee for it. Then ads were introduced and for some reason, viewers tolerated it. They grabbed their ankles and took it just like they typically do, so cable TV ads became firmly entrenched.

      Gamers, the same thing will happen to you if you put up with this. There can be no doubt about it.

      • by frdmfghtr (603968)

        Will not buy.

        Neither will I.

        I have this distant hope that gamers will learn the lesson taught to us by cable TV. Originally cable TV was ad-free on the basis that you were paying a fee for it. Then ads were introduced and for some reason, viewers tolerated it. They grabbed their ankles and took it just like they typically do, so cable TV ads became firmly entrenched.

        That's why I limit myself to cable TV packages that only have the local OTA stations (digital reception sucks). I'm not going to pay the cable carrier to show me ads on channels supposedly funded by cable fees, especially when ads are slowly taking up more time (not to mention full-length "infomercials").

    • by symbolset (646467) *
      The ads are a feature. Based on what the Kinect sees when you forget to turn it to the wall it will know whether to offer you medical services, viagra, penis enhancement pills, cheetos and hot pockets or flavored lube.
      • The ads are a feature. Based on what the Kinect sees when you forget to turn it to the wall it will know whether to offer you medical services, viagra, penis enhancement pills, cheetos and hot pockets or flavored lube.

        Note to self...hot pockets and cheetos flavored lube!

  • Wii U... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by eagee (1308589) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:07PM (#44200591)
    Wow, I actually want the new xbox less than I want a Wii U now...
    • Xbox Telescreen (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 05, 2013 @11:13PM (#44200919)

      Microsoft's Skype, has a backdoor for the NSA to do stuff like live surveillance. This came out in the PRISM/CHESS documents.
      So your XBox with its dual Kinect cameras sitting on the TV, and its always-on connections to the Internet could well also have an NSA back door to it, like Skype does.

      Also from the Blackhat presentation, Skype is obfuscated code and may contain back doors beyond surveillance of calls, e.g. maybe they can turn mic/camera on remotely:
      https://www.blackhat.com/presentations/bh-europe-06/bh-eu-06-biondi/bh-eu-06-biondi-up.pdf

      It's all very 1984 telescreen

  • Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Darkness404 (1287218) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:09PM (#44200607)
    Why are there even ads on the Xbox? After all you've:

    A) Bought the console
    B) Bought some games (presumably)
    C) Quite possibly bought a gold membership

    Now, I can understand something like when you go to the store to have maybe a little promo of "what's new" but beyond that, ads are unacceptable.
    • Re:Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by maxsthekat (1275608) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:15PM (#44200655)
      Because, fuck you, pay me. That's why.
    • Why are there even ads on the Xbox? After all you've:

      A) Bought the console

      B) Bought some games (presumably)

      C) Quite possibly bought a gold membership

      Now, I can understand something like when you go to the store to have maybe a little promo of "what's new" but beyond that, ads are unacceptable.

      Except you don't buy anything anymore you don't own your xbox...games...service you license them. Suck it up or by an alternative product of which there is many. I have bought an OuYa.

    • Re:Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by antdude (79039) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:49PM (#44200829) Homepage Journal

      Why do we still have ads on cable TV when it started with none decades ago?

      • I don't know, and that's one of the reasons why I cut the cable a couple of years ago and why I've got Netflix (which is ad free) instead of Hulu Plus (which has ads).
        • Depends on your definition of "ad". To me, any kind of "information" about how much I'd love to watch some other show on their program which is thrown at me before, after, in between and at whatever other point they manage to squeeze it in DOES count as an ad.

          At the very least once it has been repeated often enough that you can actually speak along to the announcer it's even surpassed the annoyance I usually get out of ads.

      • The answer to both questions is the same: because subscription revenue alone no longer covers the costs of content and distribution. Advertising is why XBL is $50/year for all of the services they provide instead of $200 for fewer services. Or to use a cable TV example, it's why every channel producing scripted content isn't $15/month like HBO.

        Which is not to say it's a great outcome, but the public has shown time and time again that they'll accept advertising in exchange for staving off service cost increa

    • by Darinbob (1142669)

      Everyone is convinced that earning $500 from a console sale is chump change compared to the pennies they can get from advertising!

    • by citizenr (871508)

      Try typing that question into your Windows 8.1 search bar.

    • Feedback Loop (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 05, 2013 @11:40PM (#44201013)

      They play adverts, they monitor the kinect camera, and they can see which ads have an effect and are watched. XBox is an ads mans wet dream. Never mind that its a customers nightmare.

      Also the possibilities for profit are endless:

      Suppose you are in the UK and have an XBox with Kinect. NSA can legally spy on Brits, so it buys spy time on XBox Kinects to watch a target. Turns on the camera, gets its surveillance data and hey presto, leverage. Maybe a politicians family is in, the son is smoking pot, that's paydirt and you as customer brought the surveillance camera into your own home and wired it up yourself and even pay for the connection to the NSA!

      Would Microsoft sell them access? Well it provided live Skype taps, message+voice+video taps on Skype. And Skype must have some business model we can't see to justify its $7 billion price. So yeh, damn right!

  • by SJHiIlman (2957043) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:09PM (#44200613)

    When I want a game console, what I actually want are advertisements! And the Xbox One offers interactive advertisements, no less! Sure, you could just play games to get your fill of interactive content, but why play games when you could watch ads? Who plays games, anyway? Certainly not people who buy the Xbox One; they'll be too busy with ads.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    GO FUCK YOURSELVES MICROSOFT.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:15PM (#44200659)

    I'll say it again:

    The primary purpose of the XBox One is to be a platform for selling ads. On the one hand, publishers no longer need to solicit for static advertising in games, now they can have Microsoft be the entire advertising platform. It's like embedding a Google ad on your blog and collecting the revenue, only now on a HUGE scale. On the other hand, no longer do advertisers need to pay a ton for static ads on pre-releae titles, hoping that the ad retains enough relevance to be beneficial to their business. Publishers win, Microsoft wins, and advertisers win. Welcome to the future!

    Kinect is all about generating advertising hints. It just is. There's no other sane reason why it supposedly cannot be turned off. It's there to collect hints on your environment, feed them to the Bing ad platform, and generate in-game ads as a result.

    The always-on, regularly dial-home connectivity scheme was all about exchanging advertising hints for ads. Microsoft can capture advertisers by guaranteeing nearly real-time freshness of their advertising.

    And lastly, the "co-process in the cloud" is all about advertising. Polygons aren't going to be rendered in the cloud, ad textures are. Turn that off and I bet there will be a lot of empty textures in just about every XB1 game that comes out, from AAA titles to $5 throw-aways.

    Microsoft is selling you to the advertisers. It's just as simple as that.

    • by Camael (1048726) on Friday July 05, 2013 @11:41PM (#44201017)

      Yup. MS said so themselves.

      Xbox One built for ads from the ground up [sticktwiddlers.com]

      So what about the future of advertising on the Xbox One? “It’s going to be an exciting transition though because the 360 console wasn’t built with advertising in mind, it was more of an afterthought, so we’ve had to adapt to the technology and how we work to fit them in to the console,” said Technical Account Manager for Xbox LIVE Advertising, “whereas this new one is going to have advertising in mind. So a lot of the limitations that we have now, hopefully the release of the boundaries will widened so the opportunities will be a lot greater.”

  • Wonderful. (Score:5, Funny)

    by jtownatpunk.net (245670) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:16PM (#44200677)

    So will I have to run in place for ten seconds to skip a weight loss ad and play my game?

  • It's all about the camera. The one in your living-room. Considering who Microsoft is working with these days, do you really want a camera in your living-room?

  • Yeah, that really isn't going to work. I mean, the only things that will be said to the screen will be a variety of invitations to sexual acts or to vacate.
  • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:35PM (#44200785)
    This is perhaps the most negative publicity that I've seen for a console before it even came out. Even the failures like the 3DO had great publicity (the 3DO was named Time's 'product of the year')

    Has there been -anything- positive that has come out of the Xbox One's pre-launch that hasn't just been damage control?
  • by turp182 (1020263) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:39PM (#44200799) Journal

    Here's the new screen layout:
    http://codinghorror.typepad.com/.a/6a0120a85dcdae970b0120a86dd2e5970b-pi [typepad.com]

    To some degree we are getting there (it's worse on the XBox 360):
    http://cdn-static.zdnet.com/i/r/story/70/00/002993/original/w8rtm-windows-8-start-620x.jpg?hash=MwZ2ZmL2AQ [zdnet.com]

    And Mike Judge is a god in my mind: Idiocracy, Office Space (I wore a suit for a few years early on) and Beavis and Butthead.

    Anyway, I have to get back to Aww my Balls. Stop interrupting me. You broke my apartment.

  • Huh! I just got it (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Friday July 05, 2013 @10:43PM (#44200809)

    Looking at a still photo of the XBox One screen just made me realize... it finally dawned on me where Microsoft got the idea for the start screen tiles on XBox and Windows 8.

    It's the Wii. All they've done is let you have some of the boxes be bigger than the others - but it's basically the Wii's interface that Nintendo released in 2006.

    Even the ads. The Wii used the boxes for the Shop to advertise stuff you could buy.

  • Need I say more?

  • by EZLeeAmused (869996) on Friday July 05, 2013 @11:47PM (#44201055)
    I usually use a site as a landing page and reflexively go to my intended site (email, calendar, etc) from there, or I'm on some other site with links out. Sometimes, as soon as I click a link to where I want to go, I notice an ad on the originating page for something I actually might be interested in. But when I go back to that page, I rarely can get a repeat performance of the original ad; surprisingly I seem to get a cycle of the about a half dozen others, but rarely including the first. There should be some way to force an affinity between ads and the back button. After all, I'm not likely to bounce on the refresh button just to see what different ads come up, but it is possible that I might use the back button to get back to something I was interested in.
  • Why does my Xbone keep serving me ads for lotion and tissues? Surely it can see I already have plenty at hand.

  • by Animats (122034) on Saturday July 06, 2013 @12:43AM (#44201273) Homepage

    The Xbox One recognizes your face. It knows if you're watching. They're in a position to insist that you watch the ads. Leave during an ad, and everything pauses until you get back to finish watching the ad.

    "It sees you when you're sleeping. It knows when you're awake. It knows if you've been bad or good."

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Let's get this straight, for those of you still too thick to understand what Microsoft is doing.

    - the console refuses to function UNLESS the Kinect sensor system is fully operational
    - attempts to cover the Kinect camera lenses or point Kinect at a wall cause the console to immediately pester the user to 'recalibrate' Kinect
    - Microsoft insists that every app and game uses Kinect input to a certain degree, even if this means an optional input mechanism for menu screens. There are ZERO games and apps that will

  • by Beavertank (1178717) on Saturday July 06, 2013 @01:27AM (#44201419)
    No, really, I'm not kidding, there is no possible additional feature or "exclusive" game or service that could make me EVER buy something like this.

    Do not want with a fierce burning passion.
  • I'm fine with this as long as there are enough alternate scenes so that at any point in time I can say, "Kill yourself." and all on-screen characters will suddenly find creative ways to do so.
    This would be endlessly entertaining.
    I would be telling my friends which commercial to watch and when to say something.
    Maybe that's the future of commercials: viral Easter Egg hunts.

    (No, I don't actually think this is a ad integration is a good thing.)

  • by Karmashock (2415832) on Saturday July 06, 2013 @02:12AM (#44201561)

    Apparently it needs to be connected for hte xbox to work. But can't you just put a sock over it? Congrats MS.. you get a first hand look at what the inside of my sock looks like... 24/7.

    The Orwellian parallel is the TVs in 1984 which couldn't be turned off and could spy on you. People in the book used to put curtains over the TVs when they weren't using them. But they couldn't turn them off. They'd just sit there all day and all night... and you had to put a curtain over them if you wanted any sleep. Do the same with this stupid connect device. Put a sock over it.

    Or do the really bright thing and don't buy it. MS is not providing what the consumer wants. This is not an honest product.

  • by BLToday (1777712) on Saturday July 06, 2013 @02:44AM (#44201689)

    It's not advertising, it's a new form of achievements.

    * Watched 100 ads in 3 hours
    * Clicked on 50 ads
    * Said "Xbox ONE, search for pizza"

Contemptuous lights flashed flashed across the computer's console. -- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

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