Microsoft acquisition holds unique universal remote patent


A patent owned by R2 Studios could have big implications for the future of Xbox.

When it was first reported Microsoft was buying Sling Media founder Blake Krikorian's new company, R2 Studios, it was quickly revealed the acquisition would be part of Microsoft's efforts to beef up its Xbox devices. According to patents discovered by GeekWire, a new form of universal remote could be one of the beneficial aspects of the deal.

Patent filings in the U.S. reveal R2 Studios has a patent for a unique form of universal remote that would allow users to control a wide variety of devices from a single controller. Some of the devices included in the patent include computers, televisions, video cameras, lights and more generic household appliances.

Microsoft's made no secret of its desire to expand the Xbox platform into entertainment sectors beyond gaming. The company recently rebranded its Zune music and video service to use the Xbox name because of its strong brand recognition.

Larry Hryb, Xbox Live's director of programming, recently launched a countdown to this year's E3 gaming conference, hinting at a possible announcement for new Xbox hardware. Microsoft is believed to be working on two separate Xbox devices – one of which is believed to be a set-top box device that will be more entertainment-based and only offer basic games. A full successor to the Xbox 360 is also expected to be announced.

Given Microsoft's desire to expand the Xbox brand to its other products – including computers and smartphones – and more entertainment services, consumers may see the fruits of the company's R2 Studios acquisition sooner rather than later after the deal is finalized.

Source: GeekWire | Image via GeekWire

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