Microsoft has announced the Xbox Adaptive Controller for the differently abled. The device was leaked earlier this week. The controller has two big programmable buttons and 19 jacks. The jacks can be connected to a range of joysticks, switches, buttons made it easier for a wider range of users to play games.
"I can customize how I interface with the Xbox Adaptive Controller to whatever I want," says Solomon Romney, a Microsoft Store employee who is differently abled. "If I want to play a game entirely with my feet, I can. I can make the controls fit my body, my desires, and I can change them anytime I want. You plug in whatever you want and go. It takes virtually no time to set it up and use it. It could not be simpler."
The focus here is on the connectivity and customisability, with the users allowed to build a setup that works according to their capabilities. However, It won't be an all-in-one solution for many games. But through Xbox's system-level button revamping the possibilities could be endless. The new controller is priced at $99.99 and will go on sale later this year.
Microsoft is also reportedly working on a smart speaker in partnership with Quanta Computer. At least that's what unspecified developer documentation suggests. There have been few technical specifications highlighted in the purported documents. It mentions that the device will be optimized for "Internet of Things" but there aren't any details about the execution.
The smart speaker is tipped to boast one of Qualcomm's Snapdragon 212 SoCs. The processor is generally used in budget smartphones. It packs four ARM Cortex-A7 cores, clocked at 1.3GHz and backed by an Adreno 304 GPU. The use of such low-end chipset isn't surprising since the audio drivers would certainly be reliant on the server-side hardware. What's certain is that Microsoft's Cortana would power the device. However, there could be some room for Amazon Alexa integration, coming in line with the recent speculation of a collaboration.
According to the documents, the speakers are still under development, so it's best if you don't set high expectations to see a new smart speaker anytime soon.