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Microsoft Adds Kinect Support For Netflix

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the more-lazy-please dept.

Television 69

Arneh writes "Microsoft today released an update for the Xbox 360 which brings Kinect support for the popular Netflix application. Users will be prompted to upgrade the next time they start up Netflix." Finally, a remote that my 3-year-old can't hide.

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Sort of. . . (4, Interesting)

Zenaku (821866) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819228)

If the facts stated in this review are accurate, Microsoft should be embarrassed by this level of "support."

http://kotaku.com/#!5792076/kinect-for-netflix-is-a-catastrophe-microsoft-has-no-idea-what-to-do-with-kinect [kotaku.com]

Re:Sort of. . . (2)

Zenaku (821866) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819266)

Fortunately, I think the reviewer may be doing something wrong.

(sorry for the self reply, I left off the last part of my comment in a link pasting snafu.)

Re:Sort of. . . (2)

DanTheStone (1212500) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819608)

I wouldn't be surprised if he weren't doing anything wrong. The ESPN3 app for Kinect doesn't let you go through the On-Demand listings of different sports, only the 8 games they suggest. They really should have added Kinect emulation of a controller to the normal apps, instead of creating new Kinect-only versions.

I, of course, intend to try this out as soon as I get home from work.

Re:Sort of. . . (1)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 3 years ago | (#35822200)

On, the other hand, it was written by Joel Johnson, who has proven again and again on Gizmodo, etc that he has probably never figured out how to tie his shoes, let alone use Kinect.

Re:Sort of. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819346)

Sorry, couldn't read the article over the giant yellow Best Buy banners distracting my vision.

Re:Sort of. . . (-1, Troll)

Zenaku (821866) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819396)

Banners? What banners? I saw no banners. They must only exist for you and anyone else who can't be arsed to install AdBlock.

Re:Sort of. . . (1)

obergfellja (947995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819728)

what is a banner?

Re:Sort of. . . (1)

nevillethedevil (1021497) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820262)

Not sure but I hear you shouldn't make them angry, you wouldn't like them when they're angry.

Re:Sort of. . . (3, Interesting)

HermMunster (972336) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819662)

I was going to say that if anyone has experience with the Kinect they'd know that it is a difficult tool to use in order to select things. I can't imagine going back and forth scrolling thumbnail art and making selections. Talk about super slow and unresponsive. Work needs to be done on the Kinect before it really can be considered a good input tool.

As far as games go, it seems OK. It is responsive enough while in the game, but when outside choosing items on the screen, well, it lacks, a lot.

Re:Sort of. . . (1)

DanTheStone (1212500) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819778)

They should definitely allow you to browse your instant queue, though, at a minimum. They could lay it out the same way as the Kinect Hub, which has reasonable navigation and selection ability.

Re:Sort of. . . (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819906)

So wait, Kotaku, a site with the worst UI design I've ever seen is criticizing MS's kinect interface? Le irony, it is too much!

Re:Sort of. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35821532)

TOUCH DOWN!

Oh shit, it just changed channels again!

Re:Sort of. . . (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35824162)

you link to kotaku?... seriously? mouhahaha

Obligatory (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819268)

In Soviet Russia Netflix watches you!

Why? (3, Insightful)

Lunaritian (2018246) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819300)

Sure, it may be cooler to watch videos by waving your arms, but still... buttons are more accurate and faster to use. What's wrong with using the controller for controls?

Re:Why? (3, Insightful)

swanzilla (1458281) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819430)

Sure, it may be cooler to watch videos by waving your arms, but still... buttons are more accurate and faster to use. What's wrong with using the controller for controls?

Nothing. Sort of like eating sushi with a fork...may be more practical, but you will not rack up any style points in doing so.

Re:Why? (2)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819476)

Sort of like eating sushi with a fork...may be more practical, but you will not rack up any style points in doing so.

Nor by waving your arms around vice pushing a few buttons, I'd say. In fact, if the situation were reversed where Kinect style controls were the norm, people would probably regard remotes like the second coming. "FINALLY, I don't have to wave my fucking arms around just to change the channel!"

Re:Why? (2)

demonbug (309515) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819668)

Sure, it may be cooler to watch videos by waving your arms, but still... buttons are more accurate and faster to use. What's wrong with using the controller for controls?

Nothing. Sort of like eating sushi with a fork...may be more practical, but you will not rack up any style points in doing so.

Huh? Obviously you don't know how to use chopsticks... just as easy as using a fork.

This is more like using a trained chimpanzee to eat your sushi. Pointless, slow, unreliable, and the only possible reason anyone would ever do it is to show off to their buddies. Once.

Re:Why? (1)

rbollinger (1922546) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820168)

Personally, I feel like the Kinect on the whole is pretty gimmicky. Not to say that its a bad piece of hardware as there are some truly incredible Kinect hacks out there. But it just doesn't make sense as a controller, for games or otherwise. Gaming and computing in general require a fairly high degree of accuracy with your controllers. On the PC, FPS players will pay quite a bit of money to get a more accurate mouse, and MMO players are always looking for easier access to as many buttons as possible. Kinect went the opposite direction, less accuracy and gestures. Sure its cool as a novelty, but eventually the games all start to feel the same, and for everything else its just slow and clunky.

Re:Why? (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#35826684)

Huh? Obviously you don't know how to use chopsticks... just as easy as using a fork.

But not as easy as using a knife and fork, which is how everyone I know eats.

Re:Why? (1)

FreekyGeek (19819) | more than 3 years ago | (#35898696)

But if even if you practice and get good at using chopsticks as well as a fork.... why bother at all? Assuming you grew up in the west, you grew up using a fork. If you NOW live full-time in Asia and have to use chopsticks because they're what's available, that's a valid reason. But westerners who live in the west and use chopsticks (only for Asian food, of course) are simply going out of their way to acquire a smug and annoying affectation.

Re:Why? (1)

kingbilly (993754) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820212)

Sure, it may be cooler to watch videos by waving your arms, but still... buttons are more accurate and faster to use. What's wrong with using the controller for controls?

Nothing. Sort of like eating sushi with a fork...may be more practical, but you will not rack up any style points in doing so.

I've tried eating sushi with a fork once in a while, usually when I take some home and eat it later. It always fall apart for me. I think the chopsticks are more practical.

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35820730)

The controller turns off after a period of inactivity. If I want to pause the video, I sometimes have to turn on the controller, wait for it to synch then be able to control the video.
I also have to have it within reach, sometimes hard to get to when snuggling with the wife on the couch.

Re:Why? (1)

nedlohs (1335013) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819442)

The damn summary comment gave one scenario. I'm sure if you try you can come up with others.

Re:Why? (2)

by (1706743) (1706744) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819686)

It could be sorta handy to have it automatically pause if someone gets up to grab a beer / go to the bathroom / whatever, and then resume when said person returns.

Hardly something I've waited my whole life for, but still. I say, props to M$ for actually attempting to innovate. And I say this typing on a Microsoft keyboard with a Microsoft mouse...through Chrome under Debian...whoops.

Re:Why? (2)

PixetaledPikachu (1007305) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819940)

And I say this typing on a Microsoft keyboard with a Microsoft mouse...through Chrome under Debian...whoops.

I actually enjoy using computer peripherals made by Microsoft. 2 years a go I replaced my wireless logitech mouse with a Ms Wireless Mobile 4000 with bluetrack for my Lucid box. Their bluetrack mouses are cheaper than logitech's darkfield conterpart, use only 1 AA battery instead of 2, and work just as good. ..and not to mention that the XBOX360 controller is far more superior than logitech gamepad.

Re:Why? (1)

obergfellja (947995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819748)

These aren't the videos you seek...

Re:Why? (1)

dlsmith (993896) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820236)

+1.

I'm sure I'm just ignorant, but it sure sounds to me like somebody in Microsoft management didn't get the joke when they saw Gmail Motion [google.com] .

Re:Why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35820310)

Kinect has voice support as well as motion support. The voice activation is what most people would probably be excited about. Navigation using arms isn't so great, but the voice activation is pretty handy. Though, it sounds like they didn't try too hard to get this working well. Additionally, the search feature in netflix is kind of a beast to use on the xbox. Saying "Xbox, search Oceans" or even "Xbox, search O c e a ..." would much easier.

You are missing the point (1)

arivanov (12034) | more than 3 years ago | (#35821998)

This gives a whole new dimension to the old "give me the remote". Just imagine this with two kids in the house (and they need not be Dash and Violet).

The interface is for Netflix is now Charades (3, Funny)

MosnarSgnik (2041258) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819304)

You want to see: A movie. One word. The first word is one syllable. You're moving up and down. Move your left arm to see "Jump", shake your left leg for "Hop".

Semaphores (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819356)

Forget Netflix, when are they going to add Kinect support for hotmail? And what will be the gesture for spam? I have a few suggestions if they haven't settled on one already.

Re:Semaphores (2)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819592)

Google already patented that for GMail with Google Motion [gmail.com] . ;)

Re:Semaphores (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 3 years ago | (#35825734)

And what will be the gesture for spam? I have a few suggestions if they haven't settled on one already.

It'll be simple. To report spam, move near screen and raise a middle finger pointing upward in front of message. To send spam (once composed with keyboard or finger-tracing of characters and Viagra pills), move near screen, turn a half-circle (to face other people sitting on the sofa, chairs, etc.) and raise both middle fingers as above.

But can you hide it from your 3 year old? (1)

MojoRilla (591502) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819372)

Sure, your 3 year old can't hid the kinect, but it is also harder to "accidentally hide" the kinect if they want to watch a movie on NetFlix, like you can with a normal remote.

Darned kids.

Re:But can you hide it from your 3 year old? (1, Insightful)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820366)

So, you find lying to your children easier than just telling them, "No"?

Re:But can you hide it from your 3 year old? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35821556)

You don't?

Re:But can you hide it from your 3 year old? (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35821666)

Well, yes, but sometimes it backfires. Went to the library, my daughter was grabbing everything off the shelves (turns out they have games, CDs, and DVDs as well as books). I told her "I'm sure there's a limit of only about 3 things you can check out at at time." So she asks the librarian; turns out there is no limit! So then I had to tell her "Ok, but your still only getting these 5 things!"

And yet (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819374)

And yet I still have to pay for a Gold Xbox Live subscription to access my Netflix account I already pay for despite the fact I can use Netflix on my Wii and Bluray Player for no additional cost.

Re:And yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819468)

So don't do it. Give up multiplayer games and netflix on xbox to save $30 a year. That'll really stick it to Microsoft.

(yes, it's $30-35 a year if you get it on sale.. I don't know anybody that pays the full price)

Re:And yet (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820074)

Its $60. Yes you can find it on sale, but the price is $60 a year for something that up until Xbox was always considered FREE. Fucking hate LIVE apologists.

Re:And yet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35820240)

It's $60 if you can't wait until one of the sales that happens every few weeks that puts it at 30 bucks. Complaining about the MSRP on an item that is on sale frequently is silly.

Maybe you should reread my post. Nowhere in my post do I defend Microsoft. I'm not an apologist, I'm just not going to be a crybaby about $30 a year for online multiplayer / netflix. I know people that spend that much on coffee in a week. You should consider getting some help for your rage issues.

Re:And yet (1)

CCarrot (1562079) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820388)

It's not the cost, it's the principle of the thing.

I know I was royally pissed off when I found out that I could only access my bought-and-paid-for Netflix account through my bought-and-paid-for XBox console if I kept bribing M$oft every month for a useless-to-me-because-I-don't-game-online 'Gold' account...no.

I wonder why Netflix ever agreed to that, since it only hurts their own user base. Sure, I have and use other devices that stream Netflix without additional cost, and I suppose others do too, so I guess Netflix probably isn't actually hurting because of this, but still... When I was looking around for a Netflix-capable media center solution for some less tech-savvy friends and relatives, I seriously considered recommending the XBox because of it's reasonable media capabilities and 'plug and play' form factor, until I found out about this particular racket...so I guess M$oft lost a bit more than $30 per year in that instance. Of course, the constant stream of revenue from those who find value in being able to play with irritating 12YO flamers probably more than makes up for it...

One down, one to go (4, Interesting)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819390)

When I got my Kinect and played with it for navigation of the dashboard for a while I immediately realized I wanted 2 things.

Kinect control of Windows Media Center, which powers all the TVs in my home via XBox 360 extenders

Kinect control of Netflix.

One down, hopefully it doesn't suck, but unless they've changed something major the biggest problem I can see is that the Kinect stops sensing me the instant I sit on the couch or the recliner in my living room. Seems to be ubiquitous and happens in Dance Central, Kinect Adventures, Your Shape Fitness and the dashboard, so while I haven't been home yet to actually test it out, I'm guessing this isn't really going to let me stop hunting for the WMC remote since I'll probably have to get out of my seat to get the kinect to listen to me.

Voice activation works, so if it allows good voice navigation than it'll probably be Ok.

I really hope they update the media center extender software for xbox with voice commands or make the gesture recognition work when seated. Its a little obnoxious at first but once you get used to it as a control interface its not entirely horrible for short periods of time. I certainly wouldn't want to do something like compose an email or text that way however.

haven't been home to test it out yet so I'm just guessing that is

Re:One down, one to go (1)

initialE (758110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35824826)

During the E3 demo, didn't they use kinect to put Justin Bieber on? I thought the Windows media support was ready out of the box, wonder what happened to it.

Re:One down, one to go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35824836)

This seems way too vague to use. I agree the simple MCE remote gets the job done easier. Now the cool thing of using Kinect is its cool - but is it functional/practical for TV...I cant imagine one wants to wave around and scream at the TV !
(Now people could check out this amazing Bluetooth remote control Android app for Windows MCE and boxee: Tamaturaz @ www.tamatura.com...no xtender support yet though)

When I got my Kinect and played with it for navigation of the dashboard for a while I immediately realized I wanted 2 things.

Kinect control of Windows Media Center, which powers all the TVs in my home via XBox 360 extenders

Kinect control of Netflix.

One down, hopefully it doesn't suck, but unless they've changed something major the biggest problem I can see is that the Kinect stops sensing me the instant I sit on the couch or the recliner in my living room. Seems to be ubiquitous and happens in Dance Central, Kinect Adventures, Your Shape Fitness and the dashboard, so while I haven't been home yet to actually test it out, I'm guessing this isn't really going to let me stop hunting for the WMC remote since I'll probably have to get out of my seat to get the kinect to listen to me.

Voice activation works, so if it allows good voice navigation than it'll probably be Ok.

I really hope they update the media center extender software for xbox with voice commands or make the gesture recognition work when seated. Its a little obnoxious at first but once you get used to it as a control interface its not entirely horrible for short periods of time. I certainly wouldn't want to do something like compose an email or text that way however.

haven't been home to test it out yet so I'm just guessing that is

Direct URLS - skip the blog slashvertisements (3, Informative)

BitZtream (692029) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819420)

The blog linked in the summary actually points to:

http://majornelson.com/2011/04/14/kinect-support-for-netflix/ [majornelson.com]

As its information source, if you'd like to skip all the blog slashvertisements and go to the source, the actual source info is at:

http://www.xbox.com/en-US/Live/Netflix/Home [xbox.com]

eugenitix offers support for vaccines of the stars (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819428)

no longer a sic-fi nightmare plot, your kids can be injected with whoknowswhat, & the poor mommies get money. is this utopia or what?

Can't wait to see what movements... (3, Funny)

s0litaire (1205168) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819484)

... netflix will use for users to unlock/order the adult content...

Re:Can't wait to see what movements... (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820346)

If you're old enough to flip off your tv, you're old enough to watch porn. Just sayin'...;

Re:Can't wait to see what movements... (1)

edmicman (830206) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820356)

There's adult content on Netflix? Where?

Meh. (1)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819520)

Personally, I find mouse gestures obnoxious. I suppose it was inevitable that the gestures would become literal gestures.

Wait, someone slept with CmdrTaco ??? (1)

Chalex (71702) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819522)

And he has a kid???

Re:Wait, someone slept with CmdrTaco ??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35819624)

Uh, yeah, I mean technically, she was asleep.

Re:Wait, someone slept with CmdrTaco ??? (1)

vgerclover (1186893) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819752)

May be you missed him proposing through /.

Kinect is worse than a remote with small children. (3, Insightful)

BagOBones (574735) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819640)

My three year old loves to yell out "XBOX" and "Cancel" every time I try and use it, and some times randomly when on the XBOX, this causes all sorts of random navigation fun.

For all those complaining about waving, it is voice activated as well.

Netflix will EXPLODE... (1)

LordStormes (1749242) | more than 3 years ago | (#35819810)

... as soon as they add support for streaming, interactive porn.

Sadly disappointed (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820028)

Article is right, this is a joke. The ONLY truly useful features are the voice pause/play/stop etc. WHY cant they make a better interface to search/instant que etc? All this vast UI knowledge and a HUGE advantage over Sony and they squander it on this neutered piece of crap. I honestly feel like they pushed this out the door as fast as possible and put very little thought on how to make it a transformative UI experience. By now i should be able to control the entirety of the Xbox menu system with the Kinect. This should be priority #1 for them. 15 million units in the wild at $150 a pop. What a wonderful opportunity utterly wasted.

Re:Sadly disappointed (2)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820334)

They've already sold 15 million units? Mission accomplished! Why should they improve it now, you've already payed money for it!

Voice recognition? (1)

thewils (463314) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820068)

Let's hope it works better than this [youtube.com] one...

Who cares? Where is the Hulu client? (1)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820188)

Early in 2011, right? Am I gonna have to buy a Roku to do what my 360 can not?

Not too interested (1)

Is0m0rph (819726) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820200)

Netflix is more suited to the controller or my HD-DVD remote. Now LastFM on the other hand I love the Kinect integration and use it all the time.

Douglas Adams is right again. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35820284)

No one else is reminded of Zaphod Beeblebrox changing the channel on his ship? Once you happen to get to something you want to watch you have to hold very still so it doesn't change the channel again. Wow Douglas Adams was way ahead of his time.

Always helpful Microsoft (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820322)

So, next time the Kinect sees you masturbating, Clippy will pop up on the screen and say, "It looks like you're fapping... can I help you find some porn?"

They don't have to hide it... (1)

postermmxvicom (1130737) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820510)

Finally, a remote that my 3 year old can't hide

No, but they still can put peanut butter in it.

Re:They don't have to hide it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35822052)

Put peanut butter inside... your hand?

But also... (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820882)

...a remote you can't hide (or take away) from your three-year-old...

They're not 'remotes' any more... (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 3 years ago | (#35820942)

What annoys me is the fact that remote buttons (or their functionality) aren't replicated on the endpoint device. I realize electronics manufacturers want to keep their devices 'clean' but dagnabit you should still be able to access all the functionality on your device without needing to use the remote - On my devices you can't turn the subtitles on and off or access the test tone or perform a myriad of other actions without having the remote in your hand - A remote that your toddler may have conveniently hidden in a drawer or used to stir her apple juice.
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