Avatar Kinect to launch through Xbox Live this spring

By Stephany Nunneley, Tuesday, 17 May 2011 13:55 GMT

Microsoft has confirmed its “social “entertainment experience”, Avatar Kinect, will be launched through Xbox Live this spring.

The program allows you to control your Avatar’s movements and expressions through Kinect’s facial recognition system, which causes your Avatar to smile, nod, speak, and frown along with you.

Using Avatar Kinect, up to seven people will be able to project their virtual selves into a themed environment and “hang out” in sets ranging from tailgate parties to talk-show settings.

“Avatar Kinect will let you hang out and socialize with seven of your friends in a simulated environment,” said Umaimah Mendhro, a senior product manager for Microsoft Startup Business Group. “The gathering spots will range from the set of a late-night talk show to a tailgate party to a magical forest.”

All of your facial movements and voice will happen in real-time, along with your friends, and you can watch the CES 2011 demo of Avatar Kinect shown by Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer back in January below.

“The work that we did was taking something that was essentially a demo and turning it into a product,” said Eric Lang, a general manager for Microsoft Startup Business Group. “It’s a huge amount of work.”

Thanks, Electronic Theatre.

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