Xbox One: Microsoft Affirms its Commitment for Kinect
Despite recent announcement that Microsoft will be offering a Kinect free Xbox one to consumers, the company justifies that a Kinect-free Xbox One is all about consumer choice. Microsoft had repeatedly said in the past that the company will not sell the Xbox One without the Kinect sensor.
several weeks before E3 video game convention at Los Angeles
This however, marks a departure from Microsoft’s initial insistence that it would make the Kinect part of the default setup for the Xbox so that game developers could target it for development. Instead, it seems to have decided to fight on price rather than features.
Last year in August, Microsoft’s corporate vice president Phil Harrison said:
Xbox One is Kinect. They are not separate systems. An Xbox One has chips, it has memory, it has Blu-ray, it has Kinect, it has a controller. These are all part of the platform ecosystem.
The Kinect was originally offered as an add-on for the Xbox 360 in November 2010, and it sold around 8 million units in its first two months, making it the fastest-selling consumer electronics device ever. However, sales declined after that point, and total sales hit 24 million by February 2013, against a total of 76 million Xbox 360 units sold.
At the launch of Xbox One, Microsoft gained the support of game developers by stating that the Xbox One would be shipped with the Kinect and would be the “default state” of play.
Microsoft maintains that Kinect is the future of the Xbox One gaming experience and plans on encouraging developers to use the Kinects 2.0 advanced features such as its biometric capabilities to create fantastic game titles. It considers Kinect to be the edge it needs in order to outsell PS4.
Game developers however believe otherwise after losing their confidence in Kinect as a gaming platform with the recent news of a Kinect-free Xbox One. This is primarily due to the fact that they now have to consider investing resources on a platform where new owners will simply choose not to purchase their products.
Upon asking Phil Spencer, head of Microsoft’s Xbox division and Microsoft Studios, about upcoming games on the Kinect, he gave this elusive answer:
I think through this holiday you will see Kinect games come. Some of those are third-party games, we’ll see when [the publishers] want to talk about them. But I know when I look at the road map of games to come on our platform, there are Kinect-exclusive games that I think will excite fans.
Despite Microsoft’s steadfast claims, International Data Corporation (IDC), a global provider of market intelligence, predicts that Microsoft will eventually un-bundle Kinect and Xbox One in a bid to further increase its sales next year.