If it hasn’t been that obvious over the past few years, the Kinect is a failed peripheral.
Which is why it should be to no one’s surprise that Microsoft has officially disowned the glorified webcam by discontinuing the adapter needed to connect it to an Xbox One S or Xbox One X system after officially discontinuing the actual thing back in October. In a statement made to Polygon recently:
“After careful consideration, we decided to stop manufacturing the Xbox Kinect Adapter to focus attention on launching new, higher fan-requested gaming accessories across Xbox One and Windows 10,”
It wasn’t a very sad announcement to the majority of the Xbox gaming community, considering the thing has been a literal joke/meme since it’s release back in 2009. But sometimes you forget the little guy, this time in the form of a lot of Xbox consumers who actually did use the Kinect on a daily basis whether it be in the form of a mic, gesture controls, or even using it to be a bit more active in their daily lives.
Though Microsoft did originally offer a free adapter for the Kinect to any users upgrading from an Xbox One to a One S, that promotion has been long since discontinued, and it wasn’t even mentioned when the Xbox One X came out late last year. So following the natural laws of economics, it’s going for about $280 on Amazon, thus making it quite difficult to nab one if you’re wanting to keep up with the latest and greatest in the Xbox console line.
So what now?
Well, remember how the Xbox One was initially launched to be as integrated with the Kinect as it possibly could, combining that with all the functions of a standard Cable box rendering the console little more than a sleek version of one? Seeing as how certain events like this with the hype and subsequent release of the Xbox One X, Microsoft is definitely looking towards more power to their consoles in the future rather than what they consider to be ‘innovation’ in the gaming culture. (face it guys, you just can’t be Nintendo).
They haven’t said exactly what fan-requested peripherals they’re going to be producing following the official burial of this basic failure, but with the recent leak of the Xbox mouse and keyboard, it’s my opinion that they might be looking to perhaps integrate all the technology they’ve been developing over the years into one box that does everything.
In a perfect world, that box would have the power to both run Windows and Xbox OS, thus combining the two demographics of consumers they’ve been balancing for more than a decade now. We’re already seeing the integration with Windows 10 and the Xbox app which lets you do everything except play games on Xbox Live. And then it wouldn’t be out of the question to integrate the Hololens in there somewhere, though I’m not sure if the Hololens is going to be more of a peripheral rather than a standalone system.
This is all wild speculation, no one knows the path of Microsoft better than Microsoft, so we’re just going to have to let time take this one.
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