Steve Ballmer has declared that the Xbox 360 has evolved beyond being just a games machine.
The Microsoft boss told USA Today that the launch of Kinect – as well as various other social and media features – makes the device a “family entertainment center”.
“Xbox isn’t a gaming console,” he said. “It’s a place to socialise. It’s a place to watch TV. It’s the only system were you are the controller. Your voice, your gestures, your body.”
Ballmer also wants the Xbox 360 to appeal to young girls, and believe the rise of Kinect will be key to this.
“You go to your average 15-year-old boy, and he will say, ‘I’ll take an Xbox’. I want that average 15-year-old girl [to be] as excited about the Kinect, and we haven’t done as good a job drawing in that broader set of demographics,” he said.
He anecdotally referred to his own experiences, highlighting how the company’s new motion controller has broadened the Xbox 360’s appeal.
“If you want to know where the consumer hear is, the things that people want to get their hands on, it’s Xbox and Xbox Kinect,” said Ballmer.
“My wife used to say, ‘No, no, that’s the machines the boys use,’ and now she says, ‘yeah, I want to go watch movies. Let’s go play the dance game’.
“It opens accessibility to family entertainment because with the Kinect, you control these systems with your body, with your voice. We’ve opened up the world of content in TV and movies. You just sit there and say ‘Xbox’ or ‘play movie’.”