Today, Philips introducted the next Ambilight style technology, dubbed amBX. This new tech does more than just glow different colors alongside your flat panel HDTV.
Incorporating a scripting language, software engine and architecture, amBX has been designed to deliver all-new player experiences through enabled devices such as LED colour-controlled lights, active furniture, fans, heaters, audio and video, which are all placed in the user’s room. amBX goes even further to provide the support framework for peripheral manufacturers to develop these enabled products, empowering both developers and publishers to amBX-enable and enhance their games. In the future, game players may even be able to author and share their own personal amBX experiences online.
(Ambilight is currently available in sets like this one:
They give these examples:
“Imagine the room of the future, where all electronic devices are amBX-enabled. The treacherous road to Saigon will turn your room jungle green, swimming with dolphins will splash it deep blue, ‘Halo’ jumps will turn your fans on full, lightning storms will strobe your white lighting, and attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion will blast on your heaters. ”
Sounds cool, but will the developers put the compatibility into games? That’s the rub, which depends on the market penetration. They almost never support a new tech unless the gamers have it already.
I’ve never been sold on ambilight myself, because it just can’t compete with an 8′ plus front projector screen. Couple that with surround sound and solid subwoofers, and I have never seen the need for additional ambient light. However, controlling my HVAC, ceiling fan, lights in the room, etc could be rather immersive. Only time will tell if this tech will take hold, and I’m not holding my breath just yet…