By >Akihabara News Team
Microsoft Surface: Hong Kong Karaoke Bars One-Up Japan’s
Japan is famous for its near-complete permeation of cutting-edge technology in everyday life, including (and perhaps, especially) the entertainment industry. Karaoke places in Japan are often private rooms that seat three to maybe ten, and the karaoke equipment usually has many extraneous features such as a performance scoring system, hand-held touch panel library access and control terminals, and even games (for when one gets bored of singing, I suppose). Why, then, were Japanese karaoke venues not the first in the world to deploy Microsoft Surface tables in their karaoke boxes?
Red Mr in Hong Kong became the first karaoke establishment in the world to offer their customers use of Surface, purchasing a total of sixty (or eighty, depending on source) units for their newest branches opening tomorrow, with hopes to reach 300 sometime next year.
Microsoft Surface is a 30-inch fifty-two-touch (as in multitouch) tabletop computing device that sees fingers and special barcodes using five cameras underneath the table, allowing multiple people to interact with the computer at the same time. Surfaces in AT&T stores present information to users, and display comparisons between two phones placed on its surface; MSNBC used one in their coverage of the Presidential election two years ago; Sheraton Hotels, Disneyland, and other public entertainment and hospitality establishments give customers the use of Surface for various services. The multi-user feature of the Surface means that multiplayer board games such as chess, backgammon, and cards.
Header image by Hnygard on Flickr, CC by-sa. Thanks!