At the Microsoft Keynote event at CES 2011, Microsoft took the wraps off Avatar Kinect. The platform offers a new way to interact with friends and family using the popular Kinect device which Microsoft also announced has sold over 8 million units during its launch.
Avatar Kinect ups the ability for Kinect. Kinect can now track facial expressions including smiling, frowning, laughing and even eyebrow movement. This increased capability is placed onto the user's avatar and adds the life-like features to the character. Avatar Kinect also creates a new way for users to chat, rather than simple faces on a screen (think Skype), it places the avatar in different settings to allow for more natural interaction. With Kinect also being able to track body movement, the experiences becomes more natural and more appealing.
Avatar Kinect is a new social push for Microsoft's Kinect platform. The increased social presence allows Microsoft to take Kinect to the next level and expands upon the devices functionality. While this will hopefully be the first of many innovations for the Kinect device, it is a step in the right direction and expands the uses for Kinect.