GAMES CONSOLE MAKER Microsoft's Xbox One could track everything you watch on TV via the machine, a patent application has revealed.
Entitled "Awards and Achievements Across TV Ecosystem", the patent was filed by the Redmond firm in 2011 but has only just been published.
Interestingly, the patent refers to a system where users are assigned viewing goals which are then assessed using a variety of methods to make the viewing experience more interactive.
In basic terms, Microsoft would tease you with rewards by getting you to watch programming you don't actually want to but feel compelled by the fact you might receive a gift of sorts in return.
"To increase interactive viewing and encourage a user to watch one or more particular items of video content, awards and achievements may be tied to those items of video content," reads the patent filing.
The patent doesn't mention whether it refers to the Xbox One or its predecessor, the Xbox 360, or both, but it does correspond to the Xbox One system, which focuses on being more of a home entertainment device, specifically its live TV capabilities.
With the Xbox One's "always on" Kinect motion sensor, which can detect everything that is happening in the room at any given time, Microsoft could be able to tell if the viewers eyes are actually on the screen while a TV ad is playing, so the viewer couldn't trick their system and actually be absent from the room. Quite a worrying concept, if you ask us.
We asked Microsoft for a comment regarding the patent. It replied, "Micrsosoft regularly applies for and receives patents as part of its business practice, not all patents applied for or received will be incorporated into a Microsoft product."
The Xbox One has raised privacy concerns since its announcement last week. The German data protection commissioner warned on Tuesday that Microsoft's Xbox One could represent a privacy threat.
The Federal Data Protection Commissioner Peter Schaar spoke to Der Spiegel, telling it that if he knows one thing about the console, it is that it is a risky proposition. µ
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