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Microsoft's Kinect patent suggest they will be always be watching

A patent filed by Microsoft for Kinect describes a camera system that monitors the number of viewers in a room. Content providers will be able to set a threshold which if exceeded would trigger a prompt for the device owner to purchase a license for more viewers.

According to Extreme Tech, via Evil Avatar, it's that straight forward. The abstract states, “The users consuming the content on a display device are monitored so that if the number of user-views licensed is exceeded, remedial action may be taken.”

The patent is said to allow a device to limit the number of performances in a certain time period, limit the number of viewers to performances and to continually monitor viewers, also covering, “when performance of the content to an identified user exceeds a threshold.”

It also describes that the patent could be applied to head-mounted devices, large screens, gaming and media products, computers, and even mobile phones. Therefor suggesting that content providers, or copyright owner, can govern the performances in private settings.

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