Second Screen Experience - Post E3 - Part 2

Part 1 of this blog was all about explaining the background about the Smart Glass project and the excitement surrounding it. Smart Glass provide one step closer towards the merging of the devices together. The future of computing is mobility and the experience provided to the users has to move along with it. Now a days , it’s a common scenario when a user may watch a video on TV , move away from his lounge and start playing the video on its tablet or laptop and smart phones.

These new dimensions to the user experience urge the platform developers to provide a holistic user experience across all these devices.

If Microsoft can provide such an experience to the users , it will be a great achievement of the technology. It is important to note that Google (Google TV, Android, ChromeOS) and Apple (Apple TV, iOS, MacOS ) are moving into the same direction. These companies want to provide a cohesive user experience to the user whichever device he is using to access the content (the term content is interesting here which could mean photos, audio, video and even games). However, Microsoft has two edges in this arena

·      It is trying leverage the existing platforms and devices rather then shell you few more dollars/pounds out of your pocket. As Xbox and Windows are already household brands.

·      Other Competitors are still working with content providers and devices to shape them for the common user’s acceptance.

Only Apple hold the ace here too, if it can bring rumored iTV with some interesting features and AirPlay already existing would entice a big slice of consumers.

However, as a consumer I am more happy in either case as it is given me a convergence of platforms and consume my media with more devices. This is future and we have to embrace this future either now or few years later.

As for as Smart Glass is concern, I have little concern as well . For example, due to Apple/Google restrictions, iOS and android Smart Glass will be second class citizen. Similarly, media consumption of content owned by users on their laptops and devices outside of Zune/XboxMusic is not clear as well.

All issues are aside , it’s a great news from Microsoft and I am quite excited for multi-screen future. 

Second Screen Experience - Post E3 - Part 1

E3 has just finished. It has always been a Mecca for gaming industry where they want to showcase their best of breed to ensure that are on top of the competitors. E3 always have been waiting for two major reasons a.k.a new games and gaming hardware.

Considering, this time we were expecting Nintendo to show case its tablet based new controller and next generation console, therefore, everybody was expecting that Nintendo would triumph the E3 stage with ease as both Sony and Microsoft has nothing to announce. However, tables turned in different side by the announcement of Smart Glass by Microsoft.

I have been expecting some kind of announcement for Smart Glass before the event but was not sure how much impact it could bring to the gaming industry or infect any digital media industry. It was rumored that this application would challenge the reign of Apple’s AirPlay. Which made me wondered, why Microsoft is announcing it on E3 as well.

However, it turned out Smart Glass is a very clever concept from Microsoft. They introduced a competitor for not only Apple by using their new concept with existing set of peripherals but also challenged Nintendo and Sony by bringing a second screen as a controller. This allow the developers to tap into the second screen experience for the users and provide them some kind of similar experience which will extend the gaming experience. Infect Microsoft has been able to demonstrate a better-connected experience then Nintendo itself (infect I was wondering, it was high time Nintendo should come with some hard core game announcements to entice the segment of market, they always chased). However, another notable thing missing in that coverage was the challenge to GoogleTV. I have been following GoogleTV since long and I understand once commonly adopted how much TV is going to change. However, the key thing is currently GoogleTV or similar setups are not adopted widely. Considering users have to buy an extra device to accommodate this setting. However, by using Smart Glass, Microsoft infect given the user a fully controllable Smart TV along with a complete browser.

Some people are wondering that would people be able to have smart phones to be in their home, well, most of Xbox users are expected to be smart phone users anyway. If they are not then you at least expect them to have any kind of windows machine. Which will be another platform where Smart Glass will be available.

Which means Microsoft is bringing following major features via Smart Glass;

  • ·      Multimedia Streaming
  • ·      Xbox Remote Control
  • ·      Connected TV Experience
  • ·      Second Screen Gaming Experience
  • ·      Second Screen Multimedia experience

Now why I am getting very excited such initiative because this is not really a ground breaking technology at the end as many third part software’s are doing some thing similar in one or the other form. For this, you have to wait my next post J.

Welcome to new Site

Aslam-o-Alikum, Hello, Ciao, Adaab!

Its been a while I have touched my site at all until it start stinking recently and many people around me pointed that out to me. But every time, my laziness took over to me. Similarly, like other fellow Pakistanis, I desperately want a change but never really want to dig that hole to find a new light out of it.ooOops , I am getting political here, well thats why I am reshaping this site now to focus on what I really am , hence there comes Technology, Sports and Politics tag line. I know like zillionth of people on the internet, No one care what I write but at the end blogging is all about throwing out the lava within.

However, lets focus on more introductory blog of this site. When I decided enough is enough I know I have to change, I have decided certain objectives for my new site. I am just writing that experience so that anybody keen on moving on that direction could benefit from it..

Fresh and Clean Design

I wanted a fresh and clean design as compared to last time. I have been quite vocal recently about the clean and simple designs. Therefore, I wanted my site represent my same stance as well. While looking at the different design approaches, I have been sure but when I saw this metro-fied theme, it did not let me past anywhere else. Metro has been bread and butter of Microsoft due to same mantra I was vocal about. Therefore, I thought its probably best to acquire this theme. Its not yet fully metro as I should call it more of metro-inspired them. However, I am going to build on top of it and probably submit to open source as a thank you.

Blogging Focus

Its been a while I have been thinking to write what I am thinking and experiencing in day-to-day life. Although twitter has given me some of relief but 160 characters are some time not sufficient to express what you want to say (Yes , everyone who knows I am not at good at summary). Last design was more of CMS (Sharepoint) based which means it was about the content but it was never really any content apart from ME , MySELF & I , so it was never really expressed what I want. Therefore, I kept sort of new year resolution this year that it has to Change. Hence I based my new site on rather a blogging engine.

Technical Implementation/Blogging Engine

Once I made up my mind, I have two choices, either I go with wordpress (honestly do other PHP blogging tools have any chances against it), but then I wanted to keep my site in .NET platform, therefore, WordPress was out of the question. Hence I researched few of .NET blogging tools, of which DasBlog and BlogEngine.NET came more prominent. I will have to write another blog explaining why I have chosen BlogEngine.NET. 

 I have Microsoft WebMatrix who has inspired me since its introduction as I have worked with this tool in the past and I always admired its simplicity. All I have to do is to fire up the application, download the BlogEngine.NET’s template from the gallery. After that some usual customization of getting theme from their gallery and security updates. There you go…we have the site ready for publishing and WebMatrix has built-in support for web publishing too. All that took me only few hours for this change.

So for now, lets welcome to new site…..

About the author

A self egoasitc,foolishly truthfull, noisy and a geek. Currently, working for a sports media company as Technology Manager.

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