When a small Microsoft Garage team began working on "Lookout, an AI-powered tool for monitoring live video streams, they had no idea it would eventually end up as an important part of Microsoft's Mixer streaming service. But, after winning the 2017 Microsoft Hackathon, the tool, now known as "Watch For," became the backbone of Mixer's HypeZone.
In a new post on the Microsoft Garage blog (opens in new tab), the company takes a look behind the curtain of HypeZone, offering details on Watch For's humble journey from Garage project to game-streaming success.
At its inception, Watch For was designed by a Microsoft researchers Matthai Philipose, Lenin Sivalingam, Yifan Wu, Peter Bodik, and Victor Bahl. With a background in working on video analytics for the enterprise sector, the team began work on Watch For as a way to translate their experience to apply AI to a consumer setting. Over time, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella took notice of the team, and their project eventually won Microsoft's annual Hackathon in 2017.
From there, the Mixer team was intrigued by Watch For and reached out for a potential collaboration. The goal was to use Watch For's AI smarts to hone in on the most exciting moments from new battle-royale style games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) and Fortnite, which were surging in popularity. This gave birth to HypeZone.
Today, Mixer's HypeZone has expanded to offer 24/7 channels that deliver down-to-the-wire action from PUBG, Fortnite, and Rainbow Six Siege.
For more on the story of Watch For's journey, check out the full blog post at Microsoft (opens in new tab).
Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the Editor in Chief for Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl. Got a hot tip? Send it to email@example.com.
I haven't used HypeZone much, but for the times I've used it, it was great! Surprised to see they are the only ones out there. It also brings visibility to smaller, less popular, players, which is also great.
Get the best of Windows Central in in your inbox, every day!
Thank you for signing up to Windows Central. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.