Microsoft helping veterans rehabilitate with Xbox Adaptive Controller - CNET

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The controllers will help veterans to game once again.

April 30, 2019 1:15 PM PDT

Xbox Adaptive ControllerMicrosoft

Microsoft's Xbox Adaptive Controller made gaming more accessible, and now it will help veterans with their rehabilitation.

The Windows maker said Tuesday it partnered with the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to help veterans with mobility limitations. It will distribute its Xbox Adaptive Controller along with games and consoles to 22 VA rehabilitation centers across the US.

"Gaming gives you what we might call exposure therapy, meaning you get a little bit of socialization, but when you're ready to turn it off you can turn it off," Jeff Holguin, former U.S. Coast Guard member and doctoral intern clinical psychologist at the Northern Arizona VA Health Care System in Prescott, AZ, said in a press release. It gave me an outlet, a virtual efficacy within a world that I didn't feel like I had a place in anymore. I made a lot of social connections and friends through that virtual space. It was a sense of belonging and a sense of safety."

Microsoft first introduced the Xbox Adaptive Controller in September 2018. Priced at $100, the controller's design provides those with limited mobility an option to play games on an Xbox One or Windows PC.

"Our Xbox Adaptive Controller was designed to make gaming more accessible to millions of people worldwide," Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a press release. "We're partnering with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to bring the device to Veterans with limited mobility, connecting them to the games they love and the people they want to play with."

In February, the company ran an ad for the controller during the Super Bowl that stole the show. 

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