In many ways, Kinect is well ahead of its time when it launched in 2010, but its limitations for both users and developers will have to be clearly defined.
The technology was born from a skunkworks project inside Microsoft̵7;s Xbox team, whose mission was to envision a new future for gaming. This project became increasingly urgent after Nintendo launched the Wii and ended the meaning of selling consoles. With the Wii, the Japanese giant removed typical controllers in place of the wands that reflect player gestures. Designed to look like popular, user-friendly TV remotes, the Wii has become a staple in gaming and non-gaming homes.
Microsoft’s response is Project Natal, which uses a depth-sensing camera to track gestures. While the Wii can only track one-handed movement, Microsoft can provide full-body skeleton tracking, physical gesture identification, and the technology can even recognize faces. Kinect’s Secret Sauces use technology from Israeli company PrimeSense. The system uses two cameras: One infrared CMOS and one VGA color CMOS, paired with an infrared projector and a custom chip mapping image data into 3D space.
When it launched in 2010, it was a huge hit, selling 10 million units in its first 8 months sold and earning the Guinness World Record for the best-selling device. (In total, it sold about 35 million units over its lifetime.) That meant – at the time – almost a fifth of Xbox owners were packing a Kinect, but four were left. what else?
Polygons, in Kinect’s vast history, quotes Xbox Program Director Richard Irving, who said, “When you make the decision to support Kinect sensor, you are inherently limited to your audience.”
However, a handful of developers have built games for Kinect, a natural home for music, rhythm and fitness games. Harmonix, manufacturer Guitar hero, perform Dance Central, when Just Dance Ubisoft manufacturers have adopted this platform. Playing a dance game on Kinect, especially coming from tracking the Wii with a rudimentary and ready hand, is a revelation.
Microsoft then wanted to alleviate developer concerns and turned to Kinect for its next-generation console. 2013’s Xbox One won’t just ship with Kinect – the console won’t work unless the camera is plugged in. You can wake it up with its voice (and it turns out to be Aaron Paul’s voice), it will recognize you face, and maybe even detect your heart rate.
But adding Kinect to this package puts Microsoft at a disadvantage against Sony. The Xbox One launched for $ 500, making the $ 400 PlayStation 4 a much more affordable competitor – and it quickly started selling almost 2-1 out of the Xbox One. Many years later, IGN reported that Sony was scheduled to put in owned Peripheral camera with PlayStation 4, but chose to remove it shortly before launch to lower Microsoft’s price. By 2014, Microsoft decided to “separate” Kinect from the product package and cut the price by 100 USD. That hurts developers like Harmonix who stayed with Kinect through its tough launch as soon as they hit the big budget. Fantasia: Music evolves.
For many people, the Kinect was their first physical contact with a voice-controlled device. Yes, some niche devices have existed before, but the Xbox 360’s Kinect is one year ahead of Siri and four years ahead of Alexa. For all our worries about placing microphones in our homes, Microsoft has done just fine ahead of everyone else.
Kinect also acted as an introduction to something called the “Perception Computer”. As TechCrunch Written in 2013, this is a set of technologies designed to digitize human intuition concepts, like facial recognition capabilities. Kinect has helped users adapt to a world in which phones and tablets can recognize us with their faces and log us into our devices. And when it works, this kind of technology really makes us feel like we’re living in the future.
After Kinect faded from the limelight, PrimeSense’s technology found a new home for itself, after being acquired by Apple in late 2013. PrimeSense’s sensors were miniaturized and used. to build FaceID. From the iPhone 10 onwards, each device has essentially packed a small Kinect into the notch above their display. Facial recognition isn’t just limited to iOS devices, and is available on many other smartphones, tablets, and even PCs thanks to Windows Hello.
Kinect is still around, in a way. Microsoft revived Kinect with its Azure-branded version of business. It has been tested by supermarkets for quick check-out and take-out, and health care companies are looking to identify cases of falls. In September, Microsoft also announced that the technology would also be used to build new 3D cameras for a number of industrial applications. Even if the Kinect can’t exist alongside the Xbox Series X, there’s still a home for its elegant tech in the warehouse, VR headsets, and even iPhones.