SlashGear Interviews

Kinect in focus: Xbox’s app chief talks Smart Homes & Cortana

Kinect in focus: Xbox’s app chief talks Smart Homes & Cortana

When you have a product like Kinect, so closely associated with gaming, how do you convince everybody else that they should be installing a motion-tracking camera in the home? Microsoft is looking to smart home technology and health, among other things, to do just that with Kinect for Windows v2, though a stealthy spread through Cortana and smartphones may be just as vital. We caught up with Microsoft’s Michael Mott, general manager of Xbox applications and developer relations, to find out how virtual assistants and home automation could make Kinect-tech the next must-have.

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Moto 360 and Android Wear: Motorola talks Wearables

Moto 360 and Android Wear: Motorola talks Wearables

Google's Android Wear may not be about any one smartwatch, but it's clear that Motorola's Moto 360 with its circular face and classical wristwatch styling has become the early poster child of the project. SlashGear caught up with an excited Lior Ron, corporate vice president of product management at Motorola and one of the driving forces behind the Moto 360, to find out why designing the unexpected is in Motorola's DNA, how the smartwatch borrows from the Moto X, and why he thinks the company will have the edge over other Android Wear partners like HTC, LG, Samsung, and ASUS.

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Jawbone talks context in bid to rule wearables: SlashGear Interview

Jawbone talks context in bid to rule wearables: SlashGear Interview

"Data is nice, but understanding is better" Jawbone health platform product manager Andrew Rosenthal tells us, snapping his black UP24 around his wrist. You can't accuse the former MIT hacker of lacking confidence about either his employer or its product, the wildly successful UP range of fitness trackers now among the best-known wearables on the market. Nor can you doubt his enthusiasm for that data's potential to amount to far more than a tally of your steps. "Tracking is the data, and that's really important to get right, but that's table stakes at this point and we've spent the past two and a half years getting that right" Rosenthal points out. "The reason Jawbone's going to win in this space, the differentiator in the market, is going to be the ability of companies to make sense of the data, to put it in context, and then to help their users actually act on it, and change their behavior."

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Brighter beacons: Up close with Qualcomm’s Gimbal for Apple Stores

Brighter beacons: Up close with Qualcomm’s Gimbal for Apple Stores

With Gimbal, Qualcomm has a device that breaks quite a few molds. Open source, secure, and conceptually cool, Gimbal has the ability to actually make a difference in your day-to-day life. If you’re one to shop at an Apple Store, chances are you already know just how sublimely smooth the Gimbal experience can be. We sat down with Kevin Hunter, Qualcomm’s Senior Director of Product Management for Retail Solutions, to find out just how Gimbal makes it happen, both for retailers and consumers.

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Beyond Glass: Inside Epson’s scheme to make the de-facto smart glasses

Beyond Glass: Inside Epson’s scheme to make the de-facto smart glasses

Epson can forgive you if your first thought when you hear augmented reality is Google Glass, even though you're wrong. Google may never had actually described its wearable as an AR device, but a combination of the over-promising original concept video and a general naivety about the segment overall led many would-be Glass wearers to be surprised at what the headset really is: a convenient notifications pane in the corner of your vision. If you're looking for true AR, though, Epson might have the answer. We caught up with the company to check out its latest headset, the Moverio BT-200, and find out why it's confident it can become the de-facto choice for augmented reality.

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EverQuest testing smartphone gaming for cross-platform guilds

EverQuest testing smartphone gaming for cross-platform guilds

Mobile gaming is a contentious topic right now, variously accused of being the future of play, a passing fad, or the insidious villain undermining and devaluing traditional consoles and the developers that create for them. The next to potentially embrace the smartphone might surprise you, however: Sony Online Entertainment's EverQuest, a stalwart of the MMO scene - not one normally associated with another other than hardcore gaming PCs - but one about to shake up the industry by throwing open its latest alpha to the public. SlashGear caught up with EverQuest Next senior producer Terry Michaels to find out why your next guild might include Androids and iPhones.

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EverQuest Next Landmark alpha lands today: Everything you need to know

EverQuest Next Landmark alpha lands today: Everything you need to know

Later today, Sony Online Entertainment does something the developer of titles like EverQuest, PlanetSide, and DC Universe Online has never done before: it invites gamers into alpha code that's far, far from being shipping-ready. EverQuest Next Landmark is the first step of a two-punch release that will launch SOE's next-gen MMO, fifteen years after EverQuest hit shelves, and a decade after EverQuest 2.

Unlike all previous versions, however, Landmark will be seen by public eyes well before its signed-off as market ready. "This is not a bug-hunt" Dave Georgeson, director of development laughs, "it's a 20,000 person dev team." We joined the developers to get some early hands-on time with the alpha and to find out exactly what players can expect from this new universe.

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EverQuest’s Terry Michaels talks gaming’s Craigslist: The SlashGear Interview

EverQuest’s Terry Michaels talks gaming’s Craigslist: The SlashGear Interview

"Up until this game we have always tried to make a game that we thought people would like" Terry Michaels, senior producer for EverQuest Next and EverQuest Next Landmark admits, grinning. "We were guessing." That's not an accusation you could level at Sony Online Entertainment's next-generation titles in the EverQuest franchise, which takes the unprecedented step of inviting players in when Landmark is quite literally half-baked. SlashGear sat down with Michaels at the cusp of EQN Landmark alpha opening to talk crowdsourcing, the game as the new Craigslist, and how to manage ideas and expectations when your dev-team suddenly swells by 20,000.

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Motorola talks Android, Wearables & Nest: The SlashGear Interview

Motorola talks Android, Wearables & Nest: The SlashGear Interview

It's fair to say Motorola had a big 2013, and SlashGear sat down with Steve Horowitz, senior VP of software engineering, and Steve Sinclair, VP of product marketing, at CES last week to talk wearables, contextual ecosystems, and the Internet of Things. The Google-owned company kicked off a new smartphone strategy, epitomized by the always-listening Moto X and the shockingly-affordable Moto G, arguably just as notable for what it left out of its products as what it chose to include. Meanwhile - and topical, given Google has just acquired Nest - we also talked about Motorola's place in the smart home, and where former Android project lead Horowitz sees the smartphone fitting in. Read on for the full interview.

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The Wearable Medic: GERO and figuring Parkinson’s from Fitbit

The Wearable Medic: GERO and figuring Parkinson’s from Fitbit

There's a suspicion among many that wearable tech is simply today's digital navel-gazing; a self-indulgent and meaningless set of metrics bordering on narcissistic over-obsession. The quantified self could soon become a whole lot more meaningful, however, if startup GERO has its way. Building on groundbreaking research by the Human Locomotome project, the Russian company says it can use the data from wearables like Fitbit's Force and Jawbone's UP to identify chronic conditions such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, depression, and even type 2 diabetes, simply from the way we move. SlashGear caught up with GERO's co-founders at CES as they shift things out of stealth mode.

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