Slouching Toward the Next Generation: the Xbox One gets to know you

Title Slouching Toward the Next Generation: the Xbox One gets to know you
Author Scott Dobrosielsky
Posted in Features
When November 25, 2013

Late Thursday night a fleet of black and green armored cars branded with the words "Xbox One" set upon Times Square; LaFerrari super cars emitting a green neon glow sped up and down the streets of Manhattan; and hordes of people dressed as zombies shambled across the Br

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It's not that I doubt early reports, but the time required to install/etc hasn't been that big of a deal on my system. Same with installing apps. All is going fast for me, including the day one patch which took at most 5 minutes.

Wow, this generation sounds AWESOME!
That is creepy as fuck. You can keep it.

How is that creepy? Don't you find it a little more creepy that Google probably has all of your emails, and can read them instantly? I'd be more worried about that than a videogame camera that stares at your soft 90% of the time.

It's a little puzzling to me, Dead Rising 3 took forever and got hung up multiple times, Forza 5 (disc install) was ready to go about a 1/4 of the way through the install, and Ryse, which I downloaded from the XBL store took about 5 hours for the download + install and it was buggy as hell.
All apps downloaded very quickly.

That is weird. Like, DR3 was a quick install for me. NBA 2K14 took a lot longer for some reason.

I read somewhere that if the game needs an update then a full install must be performed prior to playing, but that doesn't hold water because DR3 took forever for me, but not long for you....who knows what's going here..

I don't get all the whining about how long it takes to set up both consoles. I've seen it all over the place with both the PS4 and Xbox One. It's a fact of life with pretty much every technology these days. I have to set up a new smart phone, a new TV, Roku, etc. Consoles are much more complex. I'm not at all surprised they have some set up time—and I'm especially ambivalent since set up is something that customers will (hopefully) only have to do once or twice per console cycle. It just doesn’t seem that onerous.

I get the privacy concerns, but we’re butting up against the limits of what
consoles can do, at least with regards to social connectivity, without ceding
some of our privacy. Eventually, customers are going to have to make the choice
on what they value more: the extra features that openness allows or the greater
security that privacy allows. We do ourselves a disservice by framing the
discussion as a conspiracy instead of as a choice that involves trade-offs. Let's just ensure that companies our upfront with what we're giving up so that we can make informed decisions.

I go online with the expectation that everything I do on there is part of the public record, so privacy concerns go out the window once the ethernet cord gets plugged into the console. If I cared more about privacy, I'd stop using Gmail, create my own mail server, and distribute PGP keys to my family.

"There I am sitting on my couch[. M]y face is a creepy grey, my eyes sockets dark."
"the glowing [X]box symbol"
"Stay as quiet as possible[.] Kinect is trying to hear you."
"the screen i[s] filled"
"(games, TV, clips, friends, pictures, videos, profile, etc.,)" (extra comma after etc.)
"I’m sitting there on the couch[,] the green arrow box over my head."
"Next time[,] Ryse of the Drivatars."

You weren't creeped out by this article at all? The reference to paranormal activity and Hal was hilariously creepy and fit well.

Although I approach internet privacy with the default position that I have none, I have yet to discover a single way in which "social connectivity" has enhanced my life or my experience with any product or service and I'm definitely not in favor of continuing to push it on me and everyone else.

Edit: Actually, that's not quite true. Spotify's ability to share playlists and point friends at particular songs they can then immediately stream is pretty neat and a big improvement over searching up a Youtube video, or would be if the friends I recommend music to used Spotify, which they do not. But that's self-contained functionality within Spotify.

No, I have an xbox one and think it's nifty, actually.

Fuck social connectivity. I just want to play games.

On my sister's birthday, she asked me if my Google Logo had a birthday cake on it. It did not. She did not have a Gmail account, but Google still knew it was her birthday.

Welcome to the future.

It's pretty much the same. But, oddly enough, I don't have very personal things on my email, if I do I'll probably switch to something else.
I definitely don't care for more of that, though, and, apparently, it doesn't even work very well.

I agree that the "it takes time to set up a console thing" is pretty much standard now, though it's good information to have when not presented as "whining". My wife was really excited when we bought the Wii U, and most of that excitement had drained away by the time all the profile-setting-up and software-update-downloading was complete. If I had read a review of the console first and they had called that issue out, I would have been prepared for it, and I would appreciate having that info. I do agree though that in this review there's a slight tone of "the Xbox One sucks because it took so long"

I agree about the trade-offs, but the word "privacy" isn't really accurate here. He's not complaining that the Kinect actually took pictures of him and posted "LOL this is what his face looked like when he beat a level in Dead Rising 3!" on his Facebook without asking. That's clearly a "privacy" problem. As mentioned above, search engines like Google are definitely collecting and analyzing your search history (even if you're not logged into Google), and that you could potentially view as a privacy problem.

But what he's complaining about in this post is "it feels creepy". That's all. Not "it uploaded data about me somewhere I didn't want it to", just "it visually reminds me of some scary movies". I'll be quite interested in the details of what it really does capture and publish...

Does your heart-rate info get studied by Microsoft? Does it post pictures of your face along with your Gamertag at key moments in a game without your permission? Is there a full set of the biometric info it gathers associated to your name and billing address in a database somewhere?

Those strike me as privacy issues to be weighed in trade-offs. "The Kinect recognizes my voice so I can login and switch profiles without typing stuff in" just seems like a basic technology feature unrelated to privacy - albeit "creepy" if you think of HAL instead of Star Trek TNG...

Where "social connectivity" means "the ability to post this on Facebook without having to hit ctrl-C ctrl-V", I agree with you.

In this context though, the notion that:
You pause a game to take a call or run an errand. Your wife walks in and says "Xbox, watch Netflix". It automatically suspends your game, switches to her profile, and starts Netflix without her having to pick up a remote.

...strikes me as both useful and not particularly privacy invasive.

An hour to install a game on your xbox? It takes me typically 5 minutes or less of my PC. An hour would drive me a little crazy.

I find both of them creepy. Which is why I am looking for a good gmail alternative.

In so far as it doesn't also keep a record of what your wife was watching and forward that to Microsoft.