Xbox One without Kinect for $399? How does this impact the PC version

As the saying goes, the pioneer is the fellow with the arrow in his back.

True innovation is hard enough in the computing industry, but to really pull it off, one also needs the perfect timing and, well, perfect pricing.

Sure, some may say that the original Kinect really happened only because of the motion controls included with the Nintendo Wii, all those years ago. But rarely has Microsoft stood so steadfastly behind a product that has failed to gather the necessary momentum.

The company even bundled it as default with the Xbox One, and stayed adamant that it would not be releasing a version of the console without Kinect.

But just now the company has announced that the console without the included Kinect sensor would be available for purchase June 9, at a price point of $399. Quite a turnaround!

All the while the Kinect 2 for Windows hardware is almost ready to be released.

However, as is so often the case, the finest hardware fails to take off without a solid lineup of software, and this is what happened on the Xbox One; Kinect quickly turned into a niche, not a core feature of the new console as Microsoft would have wanted.

The Kinect 2 for Windows story is still being written.

With Windows 9 on the horizon, Microsoft would be hoping for a better showing on its flagship operating platform. If not for gaming, then other intuitive uses that are very much a possibility.

The second generation sensor and hardware is improved in almost all aspects from the first, and if it takes off could help Microsoft not just on computers, but the living room too.

Timing and pricing, then.

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  • Drew J

    I have XBOX one and I love it. With that being said, I think Kinect still has a lot of issues. This is a good deal for those buying XBOX one now and I think Kinect needs to be improved before it comes to Windows. Too many issues with voice recognition.

  • Chaser

    Kinect is definitely improved from the first version, but as Drew stated, it has TONS of room for improvement. The voice recognition is maddening sometimes and constantly detects background noises/mishears things. Impressive technology, but still a long ways to go.

  • Jason Claven

    I think the main thing Microsoft didn’t take into account was that people don’t want to use kinect for games. What I mean by that is the Wii was a fad. The truth is, Americans are lazier than ever and would rather sit to play video games that have to move around and be the game. They should use it for voice and face recognition and remove the gaming aspect.

    • Mary

      Sad but true, Jason. Nobody I know even uses a Wii anymore let alone the Kinect. That certainly seems like more a fad as you suggested than a sustainable market.