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Microsoft addresses fears over Xbox One targeted advertising


Microsoft has responded to questions raised by a recent Advertising Age report, which suggested that Xbox One users could offer up a "data treasure trove" for marketing and advertising purposes.

Microsoft Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer Yusuf Mehdi addressed the Xbox One's potential for targeted advertising during a speech at the Association of National Advertisers Masters of Marketing Conference last week. Mehdi hinted that the Xbox One's bundled Kinect peripheral could track living room activity in order to serve users better-targeted dashboard advertisements.

Responding to a request for comment from Eurogamer, a Microsoft representative linked to this forum post from Microsoft Director of Product Planning Albert Penello, regarding a previous marketing-focused interview. Penello assures that the company will not use the Kinect's player-tracking features to collect data for its previously outlined Natural User Interface Advertisements.

"[...] Someone was talking about how some of the new Xbox One Kinect features *could* be used in advertising - since we can see expressions, engagement, etc. and how that might be used to target advertising," Penello wrote. "This is the point that seems to draw some controversy."

Penello continued: "First - nobody is working on that. We have a lot more interesting and pressing things to dedicate time towards. [...] I'm not aware of any active work in this space. Second - if something like that ever happened, you can be sure it wouldn't happen without the user having control over it. Period."

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