Xbox SmartGlass now available in Google Play, brings console integration to Android

Xbox SmartGlass now available in Google Play, brings console integration to Android

Hot on the heels of the Dashboard update for the Xbox 360, Microsoft's SmartGlass integration is now a reality for Android 4.0 users. The companion app branches out from the earlier My Xbox Live app for Android and allows direct control of some console features from Google-powered gear. While Windows Phone users will find the tightest integration of all, the Android port still lets users steer through the Dashboard, input text, browse the web (with zooming), search for local content, and control media playback. Players can still chat with their friends and modify their Xbox profile if they're not planning to lurk around the system all day. The interface is strikingly similar to past releases (including Android) and still demands at least an 800 x 480 screen for admission -- sorry, Wildfire S fans. You'll find a full roster of features after the break, and can hit up Google Play at the source link below for your own remote.

Jon Fingas contributed to this report.

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Xbox SmartGlass now available in Google Play, brings console integration to Android originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 26 Oct 2012 18:09:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Microsoft announces Xbox 360 holiday bundles and $50 off promo for US market

Microsoft announces Xbox 360 holiday bundles and $50 off promo for US market

With this year's holidays being just around the corner, it's only natural for companies to start tempting potential customers with cash-saving, too-good-to-pass deals. With that in mind, Microsoft, via the informative Major Nelson, announced earlier today its 2012 Xbox 360 holiday bundles in hopes of luring some folks in; among these are a 250GB console with Kinect, Dance Central 2, Kinect Sports, Kinect Adventures and one month of Xbox Live for $400, while there's also a 4GB, $300 option that comes with the same Gold subscription, Redmond's motion-tracking peripheral, Kinect Disneyland Adventures and Kinect Adventures. In addition, the Surface maker said retailers should start offering the console for $50 off MSRP, and that this limited time deal will also apply to the Halo 4 bundle which is due to come out on November 6th. Better yet, these new bundles and promos are available now -- so, for those living in the US, now could be a good time to snag one of Microsoft's renowned consoles.

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Microsoft announces Xbox 360 holiday bundles and $50 off promo for US market originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 16 Oct 2012 18:50:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Microsoft CEO Ballmer braces us for a ‘fundamental shift’ in strategy with more Microsoft-designed devices

Microsoft CEO Ballmer braces shareholders for a 'fundamental shift,' more of its own devices in the future

Microsoft's Surface tablets could already be considered warning shots across the bow, signalling that a change in strategy was underway. For anyone who was in doubt, however, CEO Steve Ballmer has clearly spelled out in a shareholder letter that Microsoft now sees its own devices as crucial to the company as anything else. There's a "fundamental shift" in how the Redmond-based crew works, he says, and investors should expect that Microsoft will periodically make "specific devices for specific purposes" (like Surface or the Xbox) that show off services in the best light possible. Ballmer adds that plans in the long run focus on new device types and learning interfaces. The message is ostensibly a rosy one for the company's future, but there's also a subtext for hardware makers that have complained about competing against their OS partner: get used to it. Ballmer sees Microsoft-designed hardware like Surface as complementary to what third parties do, and his company isn't about to reverse course anytime soon.

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Microsoft CEO Ballmer braces us for a 'fundamental shift' in strategy with more Microsoft-designed devices originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 09 Oct 2012 19:28:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Nielsen says game consoles get men to use TV more: hurray, we think

Nielsen says game console use gets men to use TV more hurray, we think

We're not sure if we should always cheer figures that reflect sedentary behavior. Still, chalk one up for greater (if superficial) gender equality. Nielsen finds that, as of this past March, men who owned a modern game console like the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 or Wii were using their TVs almost as much as women: while males in the broader population typically spend 37 fewer minutes in front of the big screen every day than females, that gap shrank to a negligible 11 minutes when console use came into play. Unfortunately, the agency doesn't say just what's getting men to tune in for that much longer. Gaming is the most likely culprit, but a raft of streaming video options could have some of those refined couch potatoes watching Hulu or Netflix instead of playing one more round of Gears of War. If consoles have people of all genders spending more time together, we're in favor of it; given that men still spend over twice as much time on consoles as women, though, it's clear there's still a bridge to cross if we want more of a balance in the kinds of TV activity we enjoy.

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Nielsen says game consoles get men to use TV more: hurray, we think originally appeared on Engadget on Fri, 05 Oct 2012 13:49:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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BBC iPlayer adds radio support to Xbox app

BBC iPlayer adds radio support to Xbox app

Well, they certainly made you wait for it, but the BBC has finally delivered on its promise, bringing radio support to its Xbox 360 app. When iPlayer launched on the console in March, patient customers were initially left without access to the national network's vast catalog of audio programming. With today's 22MB update that changes, but only so long as you're sticking with archived materials. You'll have access to the catch up feature, but no live streaming (so don't expect to get your breaking news through your Xbox). You'll also be able to pick up where you left off with previously accessed programs. If you've got an urge to find out about all the work that went into the UI design, hit up the source.

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BBC iPlayer adds radio support to Xbox app originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 29 Aug 2012 09:16:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Microsoft permanently lowering Kinect price in the US to $110, slightly reducing it in other parts of the world

Microsoft permanently lowering Kinect price in the US to $110, slightly reducing it in other parts of the world

Well, it certainly looks like the news of that Xbox Essentials Pack isn't the only thing coming out of Redmond today. As the communicative Major Nelson unequivocally notes, Microsoft's officially dropping down the price of its "You Are the Controller" Xbox 360 add-on in the US to a mere 110 bucks. Additionally, he's also said there's a "permanently reduced" pricing scheme coming to other countries in North America, Latin America and the Asia Pacific regions (save for Japan) where the company's Kinect is available for purchase; meanwhile, folks in the Middle East, Europe and Africa seem to be out of luck for now, since there are no price-slashing plans for the time being.

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Microsoft permanently lowering Kinect price in the US to $110, slightly reducing it in other parts of the world originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 22 Aug 2012 14:30:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Thrustmaster unveils Ferrari Vibration GT Cockpit 458 Italia Edition and Ferrari gamepad for Xbox 360, we go hands-on

Thrustmaster unveils Ferrari Vibration GT Cockpit 458 Italia Edition and Ferarri gamepad for Xbox 360, we go hands on

It's been almost a year since Thrustmaster rolled out its first replica Ferrari 458 Italia racing wheel and pedal set for Xbox 360, and the company's finally outed its successor: the Ferrari Vibration GT Cockpit 458 Italia Edition. Like its elder, the GT Cockpit has an 11.2-inch replica of the Ferrari 458 Italia's steering wheel, with A,B, X and Y buttons in place of turn signals and an Engine Start button that's actually a d-pad. It also sports brushed metal paddle shifters and 16-bit resolution to ensure a realistic digital driving experience. However, the new wheel is attached to a base sporting a pair of stamped steel pedals via an adjustable steering column. The whole thing has metal underpinnings and weighs 22 pounds to provide stability as you virtually race around Sebring or Laguna Seca. Plus, it's foldable, so you can easily stow it out of the way when you're not doing your best Stig impersonation.

In addition to the GT Cockpit, Thrustmaster has also outed the GPX LightBack Ferrari F1 Edition Gamepad. It largely looks like a standard corded 360 controller, with a Ferrari-style white and red paint job (replete with racing sponsor logos), backlit thumbsticks and two rows of LEDs at the top of the controller. The LEDs are programmed to provide visual indicators for engine speed or baking power, and the thumbsticks have been tweaked to be more precise than those on other available 360 gamepads. The F1 gamepad's up for pre-order today for $49.99, and the GT Cockpit can be yours in September for $300. Wanna know more? Check out our hands (and feet)-on impressions after the break.

Continue reading Thrustmaster unveils Ferrari Vibration GT Cockpit 458 Italia Edition and Ferrari gamepad for Xbox 360, we go hands-on

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Thrustmaster unveils Ferrari Vibration GT Cockpit 458 Italia Edition and Ferrari gamepad for Xbox 360, we go hands-on originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 15 Aug 2012 00:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Engadget’s back to school guide 2012: gaming

Welcome to Engadget's back to school guide! The end of summer vacation isn't nearly as much fun as the weeks that come before, but a chance to update your tech tools likely helps to ease the pain. Today, we're getting our game on -- and you can head to the back to school hub to see the rest of the product guides as they're added throughout the month. Be sure to keep checking back -- at the end of the month we'll be giving away a ton of the gear featured in our guides -- and hit up the hub page right here!

DNP Engadget's back to school guide 2012 gaming

It's time to balance out that daily grind at school with some well-deserved leisure. Fortunately, many of our choices walk that fine line between work and play -- if you're willing to stump up some more cash beyond a normal laptop, you could get something capable of handling the latest PC titles. Some of our other choices may be a harder sell in the education stakes, but we all need some stress relief, right? And with bigger consoles nearing the end of their life cycles, there's never been a more wallet-friendly time to get involved. Jump in after the break for our favorite gaming choices. If all your money's been earmarked for learnin', then you should certainly enter our sweepstakes. Leave a comment after the break for a chance to win, and visit our giveaway page for all the details.

Continue reading Engadget's back to school guide 2012: gaming

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Engadget's back to school guide 2012: gaming originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 13 Aug 2012 12:00:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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‘Just for Kids’ now available on the Xbox 360: Go, Netflix, Go!

'Just for Kids' now available on Xbox 360 Go, Netflix, Go!

Late last year, Netflix kicked off its plans to specifically cater the young crowd with its 'Just for Kids' entertainment section -- which, at that point, was nothing but a mere experiment. Still, the toons-filled project quickly found success amongst subscribers, and shortly thereafter it had made its way onto other platforms like the Nintendo Wii and PlayStation 3. Today, the Xbox 360's the latest gaming system to join the fun, as Netflix's announced the kids-only section is now available on Microsoft's popular console. Obviously you'll need both a Netflix and Xbox Live account prior to entering the hub and start streaming some Go, Diego, Go! -- otherwise all that's left to do is download the updated app before you (or your kids) can check it out.

Continue reading 'Just for Kids' now available on the Xbox 360: Go, Netflix, Go!

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'Just for Kids' now available on the Xbox 360: Go, Netflix, Go! originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 09 Aug 2012 04:32:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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