In an article posted today on Techradar where the author tirades about advertising claims that Microsoft would like to use the Kinect to gain a greater footing with regards to mining data for advertising. He sites previous speculation as to the nature that this data for ads will work with the device. The problem with the article is the fact that we don’t know the factual nature of how advertising will work on the Xbox One. Microsoft has stated that there will be a robust feature set of privacy options that will allow gamers to control their interaction with Kinect 2.0. A person could fairly presume that this includes intrusive, aggressive, and bad advertising. He states this is making the “Ad” case for the Playstation 4. Again the problem with that logic is the fact that as more information comes out, especially with articles on sites like Techradar. Many people are actually taking a look at both systems more closely. Discerning what is an agenda to perpetuate false, and unsubstantiated rumors. No one has an idea of what Microsoft’s plan for advertising. In fact Microsoft is being coy about how it plans to roll it’s relationship with publishers and developers. With the TV app/entertainment integration, there actually may be a different approach being conceived by Microsoft which will have advertising work in a way where we don’t even notice it.
With the backlash that Microsoft is getting today. We see a coordinated effort to smudge the Xbox One before it’s release with false information. Gamers are starting to see this, and respond. As the consoles pull into the view of gamers, undecideds, and holiday shopping. A decerning attitude is taking place with some common sense questions. Like why is there a light bar on my PS4 controller that does nothing? Oh it’s for the new Playstation Eye that was supposed to come with the PS4. So now the system is losing features, and parts that were to make it a complete gaming experience. In fact battery drainage may be an issue for your PS4 controller because Sony not being able to get rid of the light bar. Now this could be a design choice, or as some speculate is the fact that they do plan to release a bundle that includes the Playstation Eye, but costs a bit more than the advertising suggested price of $399 of the current models. As well the mysterious Playstation TV logo that popped up suggesting that Sony does plan to be heavily involved with entertainment, and not just gaming. Gamers are waking up to the fact that the perhaps the conversation of concern around the Xbox One is not truly legit in it’s dissection of what we are seeing from information pouring out. In fact one could say the hate for the Xbox One is driving more eyes to the reasons why. Sparking gamers, and mainstream audiences to research the console before buying it. This is why the steady climb of Xbox One pre orders on Amazon, and other online retail porters is being seen. In fact the title of this piece could be “Haters are making the Xbox One popular”. In fact in a recent article on respected gaming site Vg24/7 they quote Microsoft executives who actually go into detail about how they are looking at collecting advertising on Xbox One.
“While this might all sound intrusive and that Kinect is spying on users to sell them products, one of the Microsoft employees stressed that the company does not want the technology and its customers to be abused. However, the volume of data captured by Microsoft and advertisers via Kinect is said to be significantly lower than the information recorded by game developers. “This sort of works at two levels,” the Microsoft employee added. “There’s the game producers who have a different API, so a different set of code and system that they use, and they’ve got a lot more control of the whole thing, whereas from the advertising point of view we have a slightly more limited set, which is designed to protect the user. The company is very keen on protecting the user from any sort of abuse so we can’t do certain things.”
In both cases of the PS4 and Xbox One we do not know what, and how the function of ads will work. Will we see them? Yes, how will they come across is anyone’s guess. Agenda gaming aside most of the mainstream public won’t be educated on both consoles till maybe starting in September. So if any ads are happening they are based on pure speculation. Which when debunked makes perpetuators look rather misinformed, and unreliable. Right now the only ads are coming from Sony with their new “Greatness Awaits” campaign. Obviously that is for television, and not for the console. Yet if we look at things closer we can presume that with Sony now charging for online in mulitplayer, there will be a drop off in those using it to play. How will Sony generate income from a base that may dwindle? Ads perhaps online? As stated the jury is out on how ads will work. With GamesCom 2013 approaching, Europe a key battle ground, along with a shorter launch window, it will be interesting to see how Sony, and Microsoft address issues from console features to advertising in our game environments will have some light shed on it rather than rampant misinformation.