The eBox console is being developed by Beijing eedoo Technology Ltd., which is owned by Lenovo. The gaming arm, which was developed in July, is solely aimed at providing entertainment and gaming to Chinese families.
A staff member with eedoo confirmed that the eBox was in development but declined to offer details. However, according to Eedoo’s website, the eBox has been in development for more than two years . And judging by the comic strip on the site it looks as though the console reacts with body gestures without the need for controllers. The company said eBox uses a camera to track player movement, but unlike Nintendo’s Wii or Sony’s Move system, Ebox can plot movements and translate them into onscreen action without the need for a controller – like Kinect.
A representative for the eBox told the China Daily: Beijing eedoo Technology’s target customers for the Ebox are mainly occasional rather than hardcore players.
“Our product is designed for family entertainment. Ebox may not have exquisite game graphics, or extensive violence, but it can inspire family members to get off the couch and get some exercise,” he said.
Officially, consoles are banned in mainland China though according to an interesting comment on this Kotaku article – by Olib123 – everything is “grey” market anyway. Consoles are on sale in regular shops with no one batting an eyelid. Nintendo has made efforts to break into China with cheaper and rebranded alternatives to its efforts to some success. However the general feeling is that Chinese companies understand Chinese markets the best, in a way outsiders struggle with.
The issue of piracy is a red flag to manufacturers as well. We contacted Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo to get their lines on China but all declined.
If homegrown kit is done the right way it would be one of the first to tap into a unique opportunity. Gaming is hugely popular in China but the trend has been toward PC gaming, with online especially taking off in a massive way.