Microsoft patent could hold key to precise Kinect controls

Someone at Microsoft loves the Nintendo Power Glove. Not necessarily because it’s so bad per se, but because using subtle body movements to control technology is an old ambition that has never fully been realized. The Wii and Kinect capture broad movement but they’re terrible at subtlety. Enter Microsoft’s “Wearable Electromyography-Based (EMG) Controller.”

Engadget uncovered a patent for the technology filed by Microsoft back in 2010, and noted that Microsoft was awarded the patent on Wednesday. The controller isn’t precisely like the Power Glove, but the principle is the same. The patent describes different pieces of apparel—an armband, a shirt, eyeglasses, and an array of sensors placed over the body—that interprets electrical signals from different parts of your body to control devices.

Think about it like this: Flexing your bicep while wearing the arm band will let you turn up the volume on your Windows Phone as you’re walking down the street. Video games could benefit enormously. A fitness game on Xbox 360 for example that tracks movements through Kinect could more accurately assess performance and fitness using the EMG-based sensors on your body.

The implementation extends to almost every piece of technology there is, but the EMG controller could effectively be used to make for ultra-precise motion controls in video games.

Get our Top Stories delivered to your inbox: