(Phys.org) -- Microsoft has released a SmartGlass software development kit (SDK) for Xbox developers, giving them tools and the green light to create applications for SmartGlass before the technology makes its debut later this year. The announcement this week has opened up SmartGlass to a select group, inviting only the cadre of developers who already have agreements to develop Xbox games and apps for the Xbox 360. Those who are in that group are now free to create new activities and experiences using the SmartGlass SDK. Developer logins are required.
SmartGlass is the companys new device-swapping technology announced earlier this month that is all about the integration of tablets, phones and console experiences. With SmartGlass, the idea is to enable users to play and swap Xbox games between console and mobile devices. Microsoft aims to open up branding and potential of Xbox to those who are not into gaming as well. The technology can be used to device-swap for other purposes too, though the demos at the SmartGlass launch focused on game scenarios.
The idea is that phones and tablets become second screens with supplemental content, able to carry enhanced information about what is going on in the main console. The add-in second screen content may provide contextual information for movies and games, for example. Tablets according to the concept may even become remote-control gadgets for seeing a movie on television and for navigating menus with gestures and pinch-and-zoom. Or, a person can watch a show on TV and then swipe it over to a tablet to watch elsewhere.
What if your tablet or phone knew what you were watching on TV and presented bonus features without you having to lift a finger? What if you could use your tablet to draw up a play in EA SPORTS Madden NFL and then perform it to perfection on your TV? What if you could control your favorite websites on the TV with a simple swipe, pinch or zoom on your tablets touchscreen? That was the promotional what-if series of questions delivered by Microsoft when launching SmartGlass in early June.
Xbox SmartGlass works with Windows Phone devices and Microsoft says SmartGlass will work with other major platforms too.
Explore further: Xbox 360 synchs with smartphones and tablets (Update)