Microsoft Research unveils IllumiRoom; A gamer's dream come true

Microsoft continues to make its presence known at CES 2013 even without the benefit of an exhibit booth or a press conference of its own at the trade show. Today, the company participated in Samsung's CES press conference with a new project from Microsoft Research.

Next at Microsoft reports that the project is called IllumiRoom and as you can see in the video above, the concept shows an Xbox console with a Kinect device. This future concept uses Kinect to actually scan the living room and then the technology projects images outside the TV screen.

The idea is that if you are playing, say, a future version of Halo, you will be able to not only see the game on your big screen TV but also images that surround the TV that are placed on the walls of the living room. It's supposed to add a more immersive experience. Microsoft claims that the video is real time footage and does not include special effects that were added in later.

It's certainly an interesting project, and similar to one that Microsoft has filed a patent for a few months ago. Perhaps it will move forward from the research stage to an actual product, perhaps for a next generation Xbox game console. Microsoft says there will be more info revealed on the science behind IllumiRoom later this year.

Source: Next at Microsoft

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41 Comments

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I know this is way more advanced but didn't Phillips have something similar with Ambilight where there was something behind the screen that changed the ambient light in the room to match what was on screen.

Awesome, even more reasons for gamers to be shut in a room with no windows so that they can get better projection on to smoother walls

I think this is worth something. Either there is a subliminal message in there somewhere, or I'm into it more than I think I am. My first thought was... maybe for the next gen console I will go Microsoft instead of Sony. Maybe.

Pretty much what I was thinking... Might as well just ditch the TV and hook the Xbox with Kinect directly to the projector. Don't get me wrong the video looks cool, I just don't get the point of the TV. I'm wondering if there is multiple projectors or what as it looks like it is also projected onto the ceiling and floor.

PsYcHoKiLLa said,
So..it's a projector then. Wow..I guess.

A projector that tracks and handles distance and perspective and distortion to create a 'flat' or non flat image on irregular spaces, including 90degree angle walls.

This is beyond what a projector does by about 100 years. FYI

To everyone saying this is "just a projector" do you know how ****ing difficult it is to get a projector to auto format to a room and detect what to project where? No you don't because you have no ****ing idea how to!

I don't think this technology is 3d, fromt he video it looks like a simple projection on the surroundings of the TV

Rudy said,
I don't think this technology is 3d, fromt he video it looks like a simple projection on the surroundings of the TV

Well, yes and no...

However, if used with 3D content, it would no longer 'crop' or be restricted to the frame of the screen. So when the pail of confetti is thrown at you, the image can leave the limitation of the display.

This is what makes it 3D immersive. As for it being a 3D image or not is missing the point. The image display is 3D projected on a 2D surfaces, even if it is not using stereoscopic imaging technology.

k?

Actually, this is awesome. I can see that a few years from now, people will have a dedicated empty room just for this, so that their game play will be a la Star Trek TNG holodeck. And I am sure that this tech will change as time goes by.

I could only use this if the tv were mounted and the room was bare. Too many visual distractions over-laying furniture.

Is this the same as the project that projected blurry patterns of light on side walls to simulate peripheral vision?

Joshie said,
Is this the same as the project that projected blurry patterns of light on side walls to simulate peripheral vision?

That LED backlight that changes gradients to match the overal colors (somewhat blended) at the edges?
Forgot what its called exactly but its pretty standard in modern TV's.

Error: Kinect has encountered a problem. Your living space is too small. Please upgrade to a bigger house.

Crisp said,
Error: Kinect has encountered a problem. Your living space is too small. Please upgrade to a bigger house.

Lol... it already requires a living room.

this thing is amazing. wow. to me when gaming (like in that cod example), having the borders extend to the walls is annoying, but to immerse your room with the 'theme' of the game is ****ing great! gaming to another level!

Would be best if you had a "gaming room" where the walls were all solid white and had no other furniture. In these clips, the distortion the furniture had on it were kind of annoying. Overall a very cool product though, :-)

Shaun said,
"A gamers dream come true" Orly? This is certainly not something I would want or use.

Eh. I partially agree. It still needs ALOT of work.
Also, LOL @ the guy in the video playing on that small TV....