Under normal circumstances, one would not find the Little Mermaid covered here but we live in interesting times. Disney’s announcement on selected theatres featuring live second screen experiences for the Little Mermaid may be an important sign: The next generation audiences cannot live without their second screens and companies will have to change the way we have engaged and attended to their content completely. Well done to Disney for recognising it. I consider this is the way entertainment both in the home and in cinema will move in the future – can’t wait for the Star Wars experience of this. Please, please convert my iPhone into an iSaber so I can have pretend duels in the cinema alley!
All I can say is this is a very welcome change to what Kevin Bacon constantly keeps instructing us not to do. Pick up that phone and tablet, turn on the wifi (keep the ringer off) and sync it with the movie! I have no difficulty seeing that this can become part of the enhanced TV experience: allowing audiences to engage, purchase and share all at the same time. Quite what it does to our already diminishing attention span, I hate to wonder (plus, I get distracted. :-))
A project called IllumiRoom enables a console game to escape the bounds of a TV screen, overlaying imagery onto the space around it. The system was developed by researchers at Microsoft and uses a Kinect depth sensor and projector positioned in front of a gamer to detect the shape of the room around the TV set, and overlay imagery onto it.
IllumiRoom has been used to add a new atmosphere to games by, for example, creating the illusion of falling snow around a TV, and having explosions extend beyond the screen.
I love playing games on my phone as much as the next guy. But I really want to play angry birds on my HD TV, stretched over 50″ wide. To really experience the full effect of several games, you want to put your phone down. Plug in & play games on any TV anywhere you go with the portable Game Stick console. This little USB device lets you bring your games to the big screen with a wireless bluetooth controller and a rapidly expanding library of games.
Game Stick ran a successful kickstarter campaign and have their micro consoles on pre-order now. They also offer a more comprehensive game controller and wireless docking station, additional storage and support for peripheral hardware neatly bundled so that it can be right next to your equally minimal TV setup. I am however left hoping they would offer one in black or brushed alumnium so match the TV set up I have.
GameStick packs quiet some punch in its little space:
Processor – Amlogic 8726-MXS
Memory – 1GB DDR3 / 8GB FLASH
Content Download Manager w/ cloud storage for games – from all the demos it seems the user experience on this is by far ahead of other similar android devices
Connectivity: WiFi – 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth – 4.0, Controller – Bluetooth 3.0
O/S – Android 4.2 Jelly Bean
Full 1080p HD video decoding
Upgrade memory via microSD card slot (up to 32GB)
Support for iOS and Android mobile devices to be used as controllers
Support for XBMC.
Controller and Dock are only available in the UK from Game.
This one does earn itself a place on the wishlist for a pre-order – it is even getting full fledged XBMC integration, meaning the microconsole will also double as a full media center. They have shipped their kickstarter supports a dev kit bundle for apps, games or device integration and if you want to see a finished version, they air on the Gadget Show on 22nd of July.