I don’t have a Kinect. You would think as the only woman in the team, they would have sent me one as well as a variety of fitness or dancing games. However, my Xbox One came solely with the console and controller. I still have mixed feelings at the idea of a camera in my living room – some aspects of “living” shouldn’t be seen by outsiders – but plenty of people swear by the power of the Kinect. However, for those who use it on PC, they may need to change their shopping patterns.
It’s not just gamers who use the Kinect. In fact, gamers generally laugh at it except for the ability to shout out “Xbox On” or “Xbox take a screenshot”. On PC, it serves a far different purpose. Rather than being used for games, many people have taken on the Kinect’s power for other uses. I saw in a promotional video shown by some Microsoft PR a while a back that it’s also used in operating rooms and other medical environments. But those hospitals may need to shop for the technology in a new part of the store.
In a recent post, Michael Fry said that the company has stopped production of the PC-specific hardware to consolidate the Kinect for Windows experience around one sensor. Going forward, the Xbox One Kinect will be the only one Microsoft sells. According to Fry:
Microsoft remains committed to Kinect as a development platform on both Xbox and Windows. So while we are no longer producing the Kinect for Windows v2 sensor, we want to assure developers who are currently using it that our support for the Kinect for Windows v2 sensor remains unchanged and that they can continue to use their sensor.
While this sounds reasonable, the pricing gets a bit odd. The Kinect as a stand alone device costs $150. The adapter to make it work with your PC? Another $50. So for the exorbitant price of just $200, you too can wave your hands in front of you and hope that the camera sees you.
I’m not sure many PC gamers will deign to use the Kinect. However, it’s interesting hardware in other fields of technology. Unfortunately, I’m just not sure why they need to make the adapter so expensive – does it do something that difficult?
Last Updated: April 7, 2015
April 7, 2015 at 21:44
Well from a technological field it’s quite amazing, what it does is detect you as a user within an image, it then calculates where your joints are and then where they move. Now, before we go into more detail, remember that this is a machine that has no form of reason (it can’t find the end of our limbs without us telling it how) which means that the developer needs to create a collection of formulas that will help it see all of this (mapping out where the arm starts and ends, which could be quite a challenge when having a look at some of our ‘Murican friends, but so much easier when looking at petite built French ladies, for example), all of this from a single image, now there is an old saying that if you cannot solve a problem with a Fourier transform, it’s unsolvable, well.. I believe I’ve already gone into too much detail, in short, our brains calculate things at a rapid speed, what we are trying to do is allow a camera to do the same using only a fraction of our own computing power… I’m not surprised that they’re giving it up for the PC then…