Microsoft selects open platform to test game controllers

Microsoft has chosen National Instruments’ computer-based test solution for its Xbox video game system controllers. The system will test the trigger buttons, push buttons, and cable connections of the game controller.

Microsoft has chosen National Instruments’ computer-based test solution for its Xbox video game system controllers, part of the future-generation game console coming from Microsoft later this year. The test solution, based on the open PXI hardware platform and NI Labview 6i software, tests the trigger buttons, push buttons, and cable connections of the Xbox game controller.

‘The open technology of the NI PXI and LabVIEW solution gives us the performance and flexibility that is critical in meeting our time-to-market demands for the Xbox game system,’ said Todd Holmdahl, General Manager of Xbox Hardware.

NI’s LabVIEW 6i will provide the user interface, reporting, data storage, and instrument control for the test system. Operators will be able to run the signal integrity test while simultaneously performing other manufacturing tests.

Xbox is planned for release in the Autumn and is claimed to deliver superior graphics and better audio. Microsoft says its Xbox will have at least three times the graphics performance of the latest generation of game consoles. It features a 733 MHz CPU; a custom-designed graphics processing unit capable of processing more than 1 trillion operations per second; an 8 GB hard disk; 64 MB of total memory; 3D audio processor with 256 audio channels and 64 3D audio channels; and broadband connectivity for online game play.

The NI-based test system relies on the seamless integration of PXI and LabVIEW. The system will be installed by VI Engineering, a NI Alliance Program Select Integrator. VI Engineering will integrate, install, and support the game controller test system.