Xbox Smartglass hands-on

Microsoft is silent no longer on its buyout of R2 Studios. The software giant has officially confirmed its purchase of R2, a home automation and entertainment startup, for an unspecified amount. It's also clearer that ex-Sling chief and R2 founder Blake Krikorian is central to the deal -- he's becoming a VP in the Interactive Entertainment Business, and much of the release (after the break) centers on Krikorian's content-related design experience and how it could help the Xbox. We'll just have to be patient enough to wait for the eventual results in our living rooms.

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Microsoft Names Longtime Technology Entrepreneur Blake Krikorian Corporate Vice President in Its Interactive Entertainment Business

Jan. 10, 2013

Proven innovator and leader in media and technology brings strong entertainment background to Xbox team.

REDMOND, Wash. - Jan. 10, 2013 - Microsoft Corp. today announced the appointment of Blake Krikorian as corporate vice president for its Interactive Entertainment Business (IEB). Krikorian will report to Marc Whitten, chief product officer for IEB. This announcement follows the acquisition of Krikorian's company, id8 Group R2 Studios (R2 Studios).

"We are thrilled to have Blake join the Xbox team," Whitten said. "He's a proven innovator and well-respected leader in both the media and technology industries, having created simple, elegant products that have transformed the way people engage with and consume content. We look forward to his contribution to our team as Xbox continues to evolve and transform the games and entertainment landscape."

"I am excited to join Microsoft and be a part of the Xbox team. As a 10-year Xbox LIVE subscriber, I have seen firsthand how Xbox has delighted us by reinventing how consumers experience games and entertainment," Krikorian said. "I look forward to helping the team define the future of entertainment and contribute to the next decade of continued innovation."

Krikorian most recently founded R2 Studios. Before that he served as the co-founder, chairman and CEO of Sling Media Inc., inventors of the Emmy® award-winning Slingbox®, which is now owned by EchoStar Corp. Krikorian served on the board of Amazon.com Inc. and also co-founded the Philips Mobile Computing Group where he co-led the team that created the award-winning Velo 1 handheld PC running Windows CE. He has received numerous lifetime achievement awards including the Lifetime Technology Leadership Award from Broadcasting & Cable, as well as the TechFellow Award for Disruptive Innovation from TechCrunch, Founders Fund and NEA.

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Microsoft confirms R2 Studios acquisition, makes Krikorian a VP with the Xbox in mind