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Xbox One's HDMI Pass-Through Can Connect PS4, PCs and More

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the wish-my-laptop-had-hdmi-in dept.

Input Devices 171

MojoKid writes "The Xbox One has both HDMI-in and HDMI-out capability. The point of HDMI-in is to allow you to hook up a cable box, with output then running from the Xbox One to your television. As it turns out, however, that's not the only thing the Xbox One can do. Since the HDMI-in port is a standard option, it can accept video input from a PS4 and also accept a video stream from a PC. According to Xbox senior director of product management, Albert Panello, "any application can be snapped to a game... this could be the live TV feed, so if you wanted to play Ryse and Killzone (a PS4 exclusive), you could snap that." Keep in mind, snapping a title to the Xbox One doesn't mean that you can actually keep using Xbox One controllers in the game. If you want to snap in a PS4 game, you still need PS4 controllers. If you want to hook a PC into the Xbox One's video output, you still need mouse and keyboard, though if the Xbox One's controllers are eventually PC compatible, then you might be able to use the same controller on both platforms without doing much more than flipping a switch."

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171 comments

Non story (5, Informative)

Optimal Cynic (2886377) | about 7 months ago | (#44919309)

Socket accepts plugs it's designed to accept. What's the story?

Re:Non story (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919319)

The story is it's the only thing Microsoft managed to not fuck up on the Xbone. Quite the achievement if you ask me.

Re:Non story (1)

ze_jua (910531) | about 7 months ago | (#44919851)

Plot-twist : it has an implementation of the not-yet released HDCP3.7HD. You can plug only another Xbox One. A security flow allows you to plug the Xbox360.

you missed the point (5, Funny)

frovingslosh (582462) | about 7 months ago | (#44919649)

This is a great feature for people too stupid to just use the other HDMI input on their TV.

Re:you missed the point (5, Informative)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about 7 months ago | (#44919729)

This is a great feature for people too stupid to just use the other HDMI input on their TV.

My TV only has one HDMI input - and my receiver has two. (Not everyone has whatever you have.)

Re:you missed the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919865)

HDMI switches are available from DX at $9 and up depending on features.
So it is an affordable solution if anyone ever needs one.

BTW My $130 TV has 2 HDMI, 1 VGA and 1 Component/S-video. It probably uses the mux chip as the switch.

Re:you missed the point (0)

AK Marc (707885) | about 7 months ago | (#44920289)

My receiver has 4, my TV has 3. And there are HDMI switches out there that could be used that are much cheaper than the XBO

Re:you missed the point (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920645)

Then that should tell you its time to buy a new fucking television fucking moron.

Re:you missed the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920735)

Yeah, I just love wasting money on garbage.

Re:you missed the point (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920945)

I wouldn't dismiss it so immediately. Given that an Xbox One is a much more advanced piece of hardware than a TV, I'm guessing that there's some neat stuff which can be done by adding the Kinect's voice/motion controls and/or the console's controller to the mix. Whether you think these things are a worthwhile improvement over using a standard TV remote, that's entirely up to you. I, for one, look forward to any opportunity to avoid touching something with an order of magnitude more buttons than it needs.

Re:Non story (1)

moteyalpha (1228680) | about 7 months ago | (#44919657)

It really -is- a story because it isn't monopolistic by design. I saw a show on public tv about stocks and the broker was saying how Microsoft was still in a good position because they had Office software that was completely inoperable in other platforms which forces you to buy Windows. That surprised me because they are planning Office on Apple, Android and Libre Office is usable as a replacement ( you see I didn't say compatible ). It seems that even brokers don't understand that Microsoft must eventually compete on a less slanted playfield in order to survive and I don't think they can do that without completely cleaning house ( beyond Ballmer ) and bringing in outside management from a company like Coke or Pepsi that understands a competitive market.

Re:Non story (3, Informative)

GigaplexNZ (1233886) | about 7 months ago | (#44920583)

That surprised me because they are planning Office on Apple

Planning? Office for Mac has been around for around 24 years.

Re:Non story (1)

moteyalpha (1228680) | about 7 months ago | (#44920949)

You are correct, I was confused about a story I read here about Office on iPad. When I checked it seems there are far more options than even I was aware, like iWork, QuickOffice, DocsToGo and others.

Re:Non story (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919695)

The NSA has access to the XBOX, so now they can watch what you are watching?

(In that case, would be a crime to watch a "Keeping up with the Kardashians"-Marathon if the NSA-Agent commits suicide...?)

Re:Non story (0, Troll)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 7 months ago | (#44919891)

Socket accepts plugs it's designed to accept. What's the story?

The story is that the XBox violates the HDCP standard to do this; It has to decrypt protected content, in order to display it. There's three ways they could have done it; Analog conversion somewhere in line, a signed key for a device which essentially does the one thing HDCP was supposed to never allow, or they hacked the protocol / used unpublished knowledge. Either way... When the XBox launches, someone's going to take it apart, and then encrypted HDMI can bend over and kiss it's curvy ass goodbye.

Oh, right... marketing blurb. Right, was supposed to focus on that instead. Sorry slashdot... I forgot you aren't a geek site anymore, just a pile of paid advertisements posing as stories.

Re:Non story (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920037)

God you are an idiot.

Re:Non story (1)

cheater512 (783349) | about 7 months ago | (#44920081)

It doesn't actually violate the standard.

The standard is there to prevent unauthorised data retrieval from the stream.
E.g. encrypted video in, unencrypted video out perfect for dumping to a file.
You can be sure that Microsoft is keeping the output protected so it doesn't infringe on the input video's protection at all.

Re:Non story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920761)

E.g. encrypted video in, unencrypted video out perfect for dumping to a file.

What good does any of this DRM garbage do? I mean, DRM can't do any good, but even if this method stopped people from dumping files 100%, there are plenty of other ways to get movies, so this is just pointless.

Re:Non story (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920203)

The story is that the XBox violates the HDCP standard to do this;

someone's going to take it apart, and then encrypted HDMI can bend over and kiss it's curvy ass goodbye.

Hey retard, you're WAAAAAAY behind the times here. Maybe, while we only believe that you're stupid (before you go out and prove it by saying idiotic crap like the above), you should do a little research, for example: http://www.hdfury.com [hdfury.com]

Those guys make (and have BEEN making) HDCP/HDMI circumventing dongles and selling them in North America for years... So much for the sanctity of the HDCP/HDMI protocol!

I had to use one of their products because I wanted to connect my Amp/Receiver stack to my home-theater projector which only supports component-video-in. With an HD-Fury2 adapter in the chain, my satellite receiver, PS/3 and XB360 all play full 1080p HD content over my ANALOG projector... in complete violation of the HDCP protocol.

That all aside, the Xbox1 doesn't break HDCP anyway, unless the signal that it OUTPUTS is unencrypted, OR if the XB1 allows you to record the HDCP-protected content in some distributable way..

Personally, my Xbox-One will be installed in the device-chain AFTER my receiver (and before the HD-Fury that feeds the projector) so that ALL of the HDMI devices that are connected to the receiver can be managed through the XB1 interface... and displayed beautifully on my 96" screen :)

-AC

Re:Non story (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 7 months ago | (#44920559)

Microsoft has consistently screwed the pooch on UI design and you are going to let the run the whole show? Silly.

Re:Non story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920589)

Yes, because I like the idea of being able to, for example, have Skype sessions open with my Fantasy Football League-mates while we're all watching the games, and monitoring our teams... :) ...and I'm also looking forward to finding out what other similar kinds of enriched media / content I can finagle in addition to the above :)

-AC

Re:Non story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920283)

Are you trolling or what? I guess my receiver violates the hdcp standard, too? Pass-through IS a part of the standard, derp.

Re:Non story (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about 7 months ago | (#44920319)

Holy Shit? It's illegal to decrypt protected content, in order to display it? My TV is breaking the law!. And every HDMI compatible TV I've ever seen!

Or, you are an idiot that may have had a valid point regarding intermediate decryption, but it was lost in your hyperbole and overstatements.

Re:Non story (1)

spire3661 (1038968) | about 7 months ago | (#44920553)

Logic fail. Nothing was broken. You do realize you can pass an encrypted stream through another device right?

Re:Non story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920079)

As far as I can tell, the story is that Microsoft is trying to find ways to get people to buy the Xbox One.
This story describes how to use the Xbox One as a $500 HDMI switch to stick between your $400 TV and your $400 PS4.

However, they note that most TV's already have built-in HDMI switches, and even if your TV doesn't, you can go buy one for $20. And either way, you'll get better performance than using the Xbox One as an HDMI switch.

Re:Non story (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920379)

You're either an idiot, or are just playing one.

The Xbox one ADDS content and functionality to the stream.

So you can Skype alongside your fav TV show (popular for sporting events), or play your fav game on xbox, while keeping an eye on a tv show, or watching the progress of a large copy operation in a side-view... The point is, the xbox isn't being an HDMI switch, it's a content-enrichment tool... unlike yourself, since you're just the regular kind of tool...

-AC

Re:Non story (1)

weharc (852974) | about 7 months ago | (#44920325)

I had to check the comments to validate that I wasn't having a stroke or had left my brain at home. I couldn't work out why it was a story either.

But it adds lag (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919315)

So, not so good for a lot of games. Fine for TV, fine for your Powerpoint, but games not so much.

How is this news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919321)

Video in port doesn't care what video is being displayed. Pictures at eleven.

So what. (5, Insightful)

kamapuaa (555446) | about 7 months ago | (#44919329)

This is one of the most trivial articles I've ever seen on Slashdot.
XBone lets HDMI input pass through it for all sorts of HDMI devices, no just cable boxes.
So what.

Re:So what. (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 7 months ago | (#44919451)

It's surprising, because historically, Microsoft doesn't play well with others, particularly direct competitors.

Re:So what. (1)

radarskiy (2874255) | about 7 months ago | (#44920045)

HDCP requires end-to-end encryption, and has the entire weight of the MPAA member legal departments behind that restriction. MicroSoft just gave them all the finger.

Re:So what. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920089)

So the Xbox becomes the decrypting side to the PS3, and sends it to the TV in a separate end-to-end encryption? Not that much of a crack really and they probably just payed the license to be a decrypting end like TVs do, if there's such a thing.

Re:So what. (2)

cheater512 (783349) | about 7 months ago | (#44920095)

HDCP will definitely be enabled on the output as well.
That means it is working by design, you still can't get an encrypted stream.

Another very common example, audio amplifiers with HDMI.
They need to decrypt the stream to extract the audio then send it on.
That is fully allowed by HDCP as long as it sends it on also with HDCP.

Re:So what. (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about 7 months ago | (#44920109)

HDCP requires end-to-end encryption, and has the entire weight of the MPAA member legal departments behind that restriction. MicroSoft just gave them all the finger.

not really a pass-through doesn't need to see what its carrying so it could remain encrypted until it gets to the tv

Re:So what. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920233)

Maybe, but not so much as these guys: HD-Fury [hdfury.com]

Who've been selling their HDMI/HDCP circumvention devices in North America for years already, and in so-doing, they've been figuratively and literally giving the *AA cartels the finger for quite some time before now ...

-AC

Re:So what. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920503)

Well, it does come shortly after a story about Apple devices not accepting power from competitors power cables...

Receiver (1)

swaq (989895) | about 7 months ago | (#44919333)

I don't see how this lets me do anything that my receiver doesn't. Plus my receiver has 7 HDMI inputs instead of just 1...

Re:Receiver (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919445)

Xbox supports snap, so it's saying you can snap your Xbox ones Skype or what ever along side your PS4 or PC display

Re:Receiver (2)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#44919749)

Whatever the hell that means. Snap? Like my fingers?

After some Googling, it looks like "snap" is kind of like picture in picture. Whoopdee do.

Re:Receiver (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920043)

Xbox supports snap, so it's saying you can snap your Xbox ones Skype or what ever along side your PS4 or PC display

I could snap my fingers all day while working out to Sweatin' to the Oldies, but that still wouldn't make this news.

2 Port HDMI Switch (4, Informative)

profplump (309017) | about 7 months ago | (#44919345)

I don't understand why there's a story about a video device including a 2-port HDMI switch. Your TV probably has a much larger one already, and if it doesn't you can buy one for like $9 from Monoprice. How is this news?

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919481)

The Xbox One's killer feature is that it allows you to use other consoles.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919563)

The Xbox One's killer feature is that it allows you to use other consoles.

What is that even supposed to mean? It's like you're from some weird parallel universe.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919597)

Come on, you can do better than that! RTFA. Or even the summary.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920051)

Well socialized, non-autistic spectrum human beings refer to that as a "joke".

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919483)

The news is it's another Microsoft attempt at keeping you inside their ecosystem.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (2)

fermion (181285) | about 7 months ago | (#44919581)

I think MS wants us to believe that Xbox one can be their central switch of the living room, just like the A/V amplifier used to be. It is standard with MS type hardware. We have more ports than anyone else, so we are better.

This would tend to prove the idea that MS thinks control of the living room is the primary goal. Simply being hooked up to the ztv is not enough. All content must flow through the XBox.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (1)

adolf (21054) | about 7 months ago | (#44920799)

It is standard with MS type hardware. We have more ports than anyone else, so we are better.

Which MSFT hardware has "more ports than anyone else"?

Certainly not current-gen hardware, nor the generation before that. So what, then? Please be specific.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (1)

radarskiy (2874255) | about 7 months ago | (#44920019)

Because it's not a 2-port HDMI switch. It's a fully-decrypting HDCP receiver; note the mentioned usage of grabbing input and inserting it into a game, not just passing it through.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920461)

Because it's not a 2-port HDMI switch. It's a fully-decrypting HDCP receiver; note the mentioned usage of grabbing input and inserting it into a game, not just passing it through.

You mean like picture-in-picture? That's been around for 30 years and isn't uncommon with HDMI. Oh, they called it snap(TM). That makes it special.

Re:2 Port HDMI Switch (2)

AK Marc (707885) | about 7 months ago | (#44920343)

The only positive thing out of this is it allows you to game PS3/4 on one half while skyping with Mom on the other half of the TV. But Mom usually hangs up when you start shouting at the game.

My god! (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919357)

It's what few dared to dream of: they've replicated the TV/VCR button!

Re:My god! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919887)

All hail Microsoft for they have invented the square wheel.

If the xbox one dies on release... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919385)

... does the hdmi still pass through surround sound?

Can. But shouldn't (5, Informative)

EdZ (755139) | about 7 months ago | (#44919409)

It was later clarified by Penello that the latency of the HMDI input would be too high for gaming, and using it to pass the PS4's (or any other console, e.g. 360) output is not recommended [neogaf.com], presumably because of the overlay. Odd, as my AV receiver can overlay it's UI with no more than 1 frame of delay, but if it was only intended for overlaying of TV, then MS may never have bothered to optimise it.

Re:Can. But shouldn't (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919577)

Fuck you.

Re:Can. But shouldn't (2, Insightful)

lgftsa (617184) | about 7 months ago | (#44919635)

The intent may be to introduce a delay in the other consoles' UI responses.

When a non-tech user buys a competing console in a year or so, and it's easier for them to daisy-chain it through the xbox than hunt around behind the TV, it may be enough that they tend to play the xbox more than the new console because it's more responsive and gives a better gameplay experience.

Too paranoid? Check out the cryptographically signed charging cables from Apple, and then try to persuade me otherwise with a straight face. <sardonic grin>

Re:Can. But shouldn't (4, Informative)

coolsnowmen (695297) | about 7 months ago | (#44920277)

Input lag has been non-trivial for a while now. One of those non-marketable numbers so not all TV manufacturers spent time on them.

I remember it was impossible to play certain fast paced games on 1st Gen DLPs ( Car racing games).

Re:Can. But shouldn't (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920563)

What kind of idiot would connect their PS4 through the XBone anyway? If you do that then you need to have both consoles on when playing the PS4.

And? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919431)

And how is this supposed to motivate us to by an XBone/Big Brother Box?

Pray (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919439)

Yeah, no. I still don't want to be an xboned one when microsoft alters the deal.

Real story? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919449)

Does it work when the Xbox is off?
Does microsoft snoop on the data passed through?

Re:Real story? (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 7 months ago | (#44919553)

Does microsoft snoop on the data passed through?

You are automatically subscribed to the Customer Experience Improvement Program which sends the full HDMI data stream to Microsoft.

Snapping! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919465)

This is bullshit. "if you want to snap in a PS4 game". This is beeing explained in a way that makes it easy for non-tech gamers to misunderstand and think that the Xbox ONE can play PS4 games or that you can use your PC apps on you Xbox ONE. Which of course is false.

If this kind of trickery is all Microsoft has to contribute, then it is obvious that they know that they have lost the console wars to Sony. End of story.

I look forward to a snapless PS4 experience.

so, for those who don't know like me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919503)

What the heck is "snap"?

Re: so, for those who don't know like me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919513)

After searching since it wasn't explained in the summary or article, it allows you to switch sources or have them side by side as far as I gather... so the benefit of this with hooking a PS4 or PS3 in seems pretty pointless... or am I missing something other than the ability to daisy chain two HDMI devices into one port should that be all that's free on your TV or receiver?

Re: so, for those who don't know like me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919569)

Newer versions of HDMI allow you to send other data so i'm guessing (its a console so im not interested in RTFA) it allows you to pass controller data to/from the other device. If not I dont know.

Re:so, for those who don't know like me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919551)

It might have something to do with "squirting".

Stereo! (1)

DogDude (805747) | about 7 months ago | (#44919565)

That's a really nice feature. That'll allow one to run video to a TV, and stereo to a stereo. After all, who wants to use crappy TV speakers if you're doing HD stuff (games and movies)?

Centering a 720p image (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 7 months ago | (#44919617)

Touching the topic, let me ask a video question that I have been wondering for a while. My challenge to you is to find a way to center the 720p image from PlayStation 3 to a 1366x768 screen. My display only supports scaling the image to full screen. Are there external video processors (probably expensive solution) which have this feature, or possibly other solutions to the problem?

Re:Centering a 720p image (1)

Psyborgue (699890) | about 7 months ago | (#44919955)

I have a DVDO Edge which can do this [dvdo.com]. You set the output resolution to something fixed and set the scaling (and other settings) for each input individually. You could presumably get the exact scale you're looking for with a test pattern and tweaking. I don't recall if there is a shortcut to what you want but I wouldn't be surprised.

Who cares? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919637)

I buy game consoles to play games.

And whoopee doo, a HDMI device works on a HDMI plug....

"Futureproofing" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44919661)

I just noticed my Commodore 64 can connect a PS3.

Holy shit!!!

That's cool -- then M$ can show pop-ups over PS4!! (-1)

TwineLogic (1679802) | about 7 months ago | (#44919675)

Or maybe I will just use the multiple HDMI inputs on my display and keep MS out of my loop. Oh, that's right: I don't own an XBOX. I don't own anything from Microsoft. Whew.

Snap? (1)

jfengel (409917) | about 7 months ago | (#44919703)

What does the verb "snap" mean in this context? "Any application can be snapped to a game"? It makes it sound as if something is being done to it, but I get the impression that it's just being passed through (and so the only thing being "snapped" is the video sockets being snapped together).

Is there some technical or colloquial definition that I'm missing here?

Re:Snap? (2)

ceoyoyo (59147) | about 7 months ago | (#44919775)

No. It's apparently MS marketing speak for a picture-in-picture type feature. The XBox can display it's own output side by side with the passthrough video from whatever you plug into it.

MS seems to be all about the snap now. Snapping tablets, snapping xboxes.

Re:Snap? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920327)

'Snap Mode' is the name of a feature of the new console discussed at their Xbox event back in May:

It's essentially a port of a well-known Windows 8 feature: separate apps can be pinned to the edge of the television's screen in isolated panels, allowing gamers to use Xbox apps while playing a game, or watch TV while simultaneously using Internet Explorer

So it Breaks HDCP? (0)

Lumpy (12016) | about 7 months ago | (#44919839)

Interesting..... The Xbone may be a great way to break HDCP issues.

That would be cool that micrisoft screwed things up and broke HDCP with this.

Re:So it Breaks HDCP? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44920273)

*yawn* -- It's been utterly amazing to me that people who troll /. haven't realised that HDMI and HDCP have been circumvented for YEARS already....

HD-Fury [hdfury.com]

Circumventing HDMI+HDCP has been dead-simple for half-a-decade already, PLEASE try to keep up with the times...

-AC

In other news... (1)

Jack Kolesar (532605) | about 7 months ago | (#44920843)

The HDMI output port will produce video and the audio output jack will, in fact, produce audio. Welcome to the 21st century!
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