An old patent recently awarded to Microsoft may shed some light on the company’s future ambitions regarding the Xbox. The patent sums up an idea for a gaming console moving towards an entertainment center, rather than simply a gaming machine.
Back in January 2007, around the time when the Playstation 3 first came out, Microsoft was toying with an idea for a gaming console to pack a digital video recorder (DVR). The DVR application “running alongside a television client component [would allow] users to record media content on the gaming console.”
The patent points out that the DVR application would integrate itself with the console menu, and would allow users to record media while gaming. Users could also record content while the console is turned off. Media content could mean TV programs, local or online gaming experiences, music, DVDs and more. Users would have the freedom to switch between various modes while recording.
The example in the patent highlights a gaming device with 60 GB of total space, and a plan to be able to adjust a slider to designate how much space a console would use for a DVR. Also, the patent specifies that the primary focus for the console would be gaming, and assurances would be taken into consideration to preserve the gaming experience.
Why would Microsoft bother with a DVR? The patent points out that, “Gaming consoles provide a rich audio and visual experience that is underwritten by extensive computing resources. However, these computing resources are often times not leveraged for non-gaming uses…In short, it would be advantageous to provide systems, methods, computer readable media and the like that would allow for integrated gaming and media experience.”
Of course, every patent carries that grain of salt clause with it, though with the latest Xbox Dashboard upgrade pushing towards a better experience with streaming content, a recorder might not be such a far out idea.
Via Tom’s Guide
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