The Xbox One Kinect will overcome its perception problem
I like the Xbox One console. I really do. But one thing that no one shares any enthusiasm with me for, is the new Kinect. It’s a bundled with the console and is the reason why you’re paying extra for it. But will the public ever come to accept that the Kinect addition is worth the cash? Microsoft’s Albert Penello certainly thinks so.
Speaking to OXM, the planning and marketing director for Microsoft explained that perceptions would change when the console launched, as the new Kinect is meant to to complement the console, not serve as a tacky add-on.
“One of the biggest challenges with Kinect is that the people who are the most vocal against it, often haven’t used it,” Penello said.
You know, we’ve sold 26 million of them against a 76 million unit install base, or something along those lines – but the problem is it’s an accessory right? And whenever you have an accessory, you know, as a guy who’s worked on platforms now for three generations, there’s always a pro and a con to an accessory.
The con is, when developers can’t rely on it, when they don’t know it’s there, they’re never going to take full advantage of it. So, you get these inconsistent gaming experiences, you get inconsistent implementation, game developers had to choose to take CPU power away from the console to support the skeletons. And what we said was, for those of us that use it – like I don’t play Pixar Rush, it’s not my kind of game, but I use Kinect all the time for Xbox pause, Xbox play.
And when you see the features that the new Kinect can do – we just said, you know what, like let’s take that decision of having to make that trade off away and the console will support it, it’s native, it was engineered for it.
Penello also explained that the improved Kinect will help sell the console and games, especially now that the device was reliable. Or more importantly that it worked properly, the way it was meant to. “Everybody can rely on it, now that we’re not burdening developers [with the task of making] trade-offs with games that use it, that means more people are going to experience it.”
I will say that I after having a hands-free-on wiggle session with the device at E3, I was kinda impressed. It’s way, way better than the current Kinect and while there are still one or two moments where the device isn’t too responsive, it’s still a massive improvement.