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CES 2011: Notes on Microsoft Keynote with Steve Ballmer

To start off the Microsoft Keynote speech Steve Ballmer talked about Microsoft’s gaming achievements. With this subject in the air Ballmer talks about how the Xbox 360 integrates social networks and your media collection.

Ballmer moves on to when the Kinect for the Xbox 360 was released. He explains how you are the controller and how you can control the UI of the Xbox 360.

Ron Forbes a Program Manager at Microsoft shows us how the Xbox Kinect can control the UI of the Xbox 360 and the Zune interface on the Xbox 360 with full 1080p functionality.

Ron states that “This spring Xbox Kinect will bring Netflix and later in the spring Hulu plus will be released for the Xbox Kinect.”

After Ron exits the stage on the large screens Ballmer makes his appearance in an Avatar figure. And all of his facial expressions were showed, such as: smiles, frowns, eyebrow gestures, etc.

Ballmer comes out in human form and talks about the all new Avatar Kinect. With avatar Kinect he was able to create an Avatar video if himself. Some of the features with the Avatar Kinect let you connect with your friends for a sports game. Almost like a tailgate party. You all can hear each other and see their avatars move around. Avatar Kinect will be free to all gold members.

Ballmer moves onto the awaited Windows Phone 7. He lists some games such as: Fable, Rise of Glory, Pacman, De Blob Revolution, Fruit Ninja, Gameroom: Centipede, Assassins Creed, Monopoly, Zombie Attack 2, PES 2011, Need For Speed Undercover. Those are just a few games that they announced will be in the marketplace by the end of March. All of these games will also be connected to the Xbox Live.

Microsoft announces that they have released 9 styles of phones across 60 mobile operators in 30 countries. Currently there are 5500 Windows Phone 7 applications and games. Microsoft releases 100 news apps every 24 hours. Currently there are 20000 developers with more signing on every day. In the next few months there will be an update that includes the copy/paste function and will a significant performance upgrade for switching between applications.

Microsoft points out 7 great features of the Windows Phone 7.

1. Fast photo taking with the side photo button.

2. Glance and go feature. The glance and go smart screen is completely different that any phone out there with live tiles that bring your data to you in a live feed.

3. Voice search is able to search what you say and if you search for something on a map it will show you where you are and where our destination is and quickest path to get there.

4. Bing to Windows Phone 7 provides statistics for you if needed. So if you search for a math equation or a sports game score Bing will find the information for you which means that you don’t have to go to separate links to get you information.

5. Hubs help so that you can be working on a document on you Windows Phone 7 and can easily switch to your computer and see the newly updated information. An included feature is the ease to share your documents with other people.

6. Microsoft is watching their app release so only finished and fantastic apps.

7. Xbox Live on the Windows Phone 7

Now Ballmer comes out and starts talking about Windows 7. He says that Windows 7 is the fastest selling operating system ever. He said that 20% of all PCs on the internet run Windows 7.

Mike Angiulo from the Windows team came out to show us some new Windows 7 PCs. He showed a Dual 14” touch screen laptop made by Acer which will be releases in March. He also showed the tablet that can slide into a laptop that is made by Samsung and will be released in March. Asus is releasing a core i5 tablet with an included Wi-Fi keyboard with ink included. There was no release information for this device stated.

Microsoft Surface is coming out with a new version of Surface running Windows 7. This device is being made by Samsung. The great feature of this device is that it can control up to 20 fingers at one time and has slimmed down to 4 inches. This Surface comes with Pixel Sense. Pixel Sense makes each pixel see what is going on just like a camera. The device is also usable as a stand-up kiosk. The Surface can survive a beer bottle dropping from 18 inches without breaking or damaging the screen.

Mike also talks about the next version of Windows will support chip technology SoC to work with ARM, Intel, and AMD. Maybe they are working on Windows 8 or maybe just a Service Pack for Windows 7. He brings out a system running the new version of Windows but with the Windows 7 theme running on it. So we were not able to tell what the next version looks like. With this next version Windows will be running an ARM technology. Windows will allow ARM to connect to all of you devices just as in an Intel or AMD machine.

This Keynote was a bit monotonous. Some of the stuff they talked about was already known. When they started talking about a new version of Windows was awesome. The talk about support on ARM and release of new products made up for the monotonous parts. But this keynote is a great way to learn what is happening over at Microsoft.

Learn more the author of this post:

Kyle Paddock
I am in my senior year of high-school. My goal is to graduate college with a BS in Computer Engineering and move on to work for Microsoft. I have wanted to review product for a few years now but I never had a website to post them on. I started learning about computers was in 6th grade. Got my first computer. A Windows 95 system. And it all started from there.
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