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Microsoft Extends Kinect Motion Controller, Includes Facial Expression Recognition

Microsoft has added a new “revolutionary” feature to the Xbox Kinect motion control technology that detects and identifies the facial expressions of its user, and then projects them immediately onto an on screen avatar.

According to reports, this new feature, named as Avatar Kinect will make its debut this year in spring.

The company also promised "a new Xbox LIVE social experience that uses the sensor's precise facial-recognition capabilities to project your face and your expressions into a virtual world.”

Avatar Kinect will allow users to communicate with their buddies within several pre-configured cyber venues, which include a 'tailgate party, a “magical forest” as well as a “talk show”. The modes of communication won’t be restricted to voice only, but users can also use “life like” facial expression in conveying their messages to the other end.

"It was personally very gratifying to see the teams come together and find creative solutions." Pete Thompson, general manager of Microsoft's Xbox Live service said in a statement.

“The end result is a highly-curated consumer service that is very compelling, but also has tremendous headroom for future innovation from Microsoft and its partners. This is just the beginning." he added.