Report: Microsoft to announce Kinect exercise tracking at E3

According to a recent report, Microsoft is preparing new software and hardware for Kinect that will track users' health progress across the majority of Kinect games.

Tom Warren of The Verge writes that "Kinect Play Fit" will provide users with a universal tracking of their exercise statistics via an update to the Xbox 360's dashboard. The tracked information will then be uploaded to the cloud, which likely means the information will be tied to a user's gamertag and will follow them across devices. Additionally, Microsoft will unveil a supplementary hardware accessory, codenamed "Joule," that will work with the Kinect Play Fit service.

The Joule is a heart-rate monitor, according to Warren, that will operate wirelessly and track users' targeted exercise-related goals, such as "weight loss, strength, or cross-fitness workouts." The Joule won't be required to utilize Microsoft's new Kinect Play Fit exercise tracking system, although the system itself will not be able to monitor a user's heart rate. Most Kinect games will be instantly compatible with the Joule, unlike current third-party heart rate monitors which are only compatible with the games they ship with.

The new service and hardware will likely be announced at E3, Warren believes. Recent information has already suggested that Microsoft's E3 press conference will emphasize new services for the Xbox 360 instead of gaming-related announcements. Microsoft has the first scheduled press conference for E3 this year, set for 10 a.m. on June 6

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