PC-specific Kinect hardware in early 2012

New version of Microsoft's camera peripheral optimized for PCs will be able to precisely detect motion as close as 50cm, include shorter USB cable.

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Microsoft has been vocal about its plans to foster development of Kinect software for the PC, but the console maker is planning to adapt its motion-sensing hardware to the platform as well. In a post on the Kinect for Windows blog, the company announced that new PC-specific Kinect hardware will launch as part of the Kinect for Windows commercial program.

This is the Xbox 360 Kinect, with its intolerably long USB cord.

The new version of the Kinect hardware is being created in response to requests from developers and customers alike. First and foremost, the PC Kinect will have new firmware featuring "near mode," enabling the device to keep track of objects as close as 50 centimeters away, "with graceful degradation down to 40 centimeters." With the Xbox 360 version of the Kinect, Microsoft advises that players be at least 1.8 meters away from the camera for single-player games, and 2.4 meters away if there are two players.

Beyond the altered space requirements, the PC Kinect hardware will also feature a shorter USB cable, as well as "a small dongle to improve coexistence with other USB peripherals." Microsoft is also pledging developer support for the camera, with continuous updates to the camera's speech and tracking software.

The posting did not address pricing, or whether the "near mode" firmware update would be brought to the Xbox 360 version of Kinect.

Discussion

69 comments
Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy I forgot to mention one thing... You love to keep editing your posts because it gives you this strange feeling of looking unique and awesome! You think that this is make you dominate over everyone else and easy to remember! :P Sorry again. :D :D :D

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

I AM REALLY SORRY! I HAD NO INTENTIONS TO WRITE ALL THAT! BUT ..... :P =)) I KNEW I JUST HAD TO WHEN I STARTED TYPING THE FIRST SENTENCE :D:D::D:D::D:D::D:D:D:D::D

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

You are a cursed child. You have been damned by the world, now you want to make a comeback at them...By typing Shhiiiit on the websites :D By always and repeatedly reminding the world what imaginary things you have at your home and how cool you are and how many medals and rewards you have earned, you have to constantly tell the world that you exist. You want the e-world to recognize your existence. Its just like you have a nine tails inside of you and the world hates you.. You think of yourself a hero from those japanese anime who in the end become the hero that everyone can rely on and look up to. :D

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy You seriously have got some SERIOUS Mental problems, ma' man. Don't feel bad about it, many mentally retarded are seriously great at certain skills, typing being yours. :P But seriously, I like you. You are really one hell of a crazy son of a beech! :P :D Good knowing you, man with the complexes of a...oh wait, not that, but I'd say something else rather... You were neglected when you were just a kid and abused by your teachers and bullies, which forced you never to go out ever again. The doctors declared you mentally ill and unstable enough not to enter the society ever again! Since then you have been in your room...Your parents love you a lot but not enough to unleash you. You have been given a crazy aR$e computer to enjoy your life in the dungeons of your own house. You have made the e-reality your reality. You have joined a thousand sites to keep yourself busy. When you get bored, you go to po--rn sites to relieve yourself of that dark matter. You do not care about real people, for they forsake you and so do you, you forsake them now, so you want to think! In the dark room, in that lonely place, you have spent your whole life, from a teenager to your adulthood, now you seek to be the super popular person online; since that cant happen in real life. You treat these other online people as trash for you think they're superior as they have the freedom to go enjoy their real life as they want and come jump into the e-life whenever they want.

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

I have a theory about you, @Solidty NOTHING PERSONAL :D :D :D :D :D : :D :D :D::D

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy You are crazy enough to like your own posts. :D I like that!

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy Its not the internet's fault, ma' man! Its the manufacturing faults... Blame your mama and dada for it!

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy Wich I could add you. Because you are a crazy SOB. :D

Vampiro_HuntT3R
Vampiro_HuntT3R

@SolidTy You actually took his words to your butt, man.. I mean.. heart, sorry! Next time, instead of typing that much rubbish, that i didnt even bother reading after u starting typing down how many games u own, do something...productive. :D

Link3301
Link3301

@Soothsayer42 Pretty much any good PC games supports mods. Many have onboard mod programs. Even if they don't, you can still usually make mods. You can play mods on pretty much any game that has the option to set up custom servers.

John_Read
John_Read

@SolidTy where u when sony announced move for PC no hate statements there :P what happened to your anti valve comments and BTW i have 275gtx now

Falmar
Falmar

So now ms is pushing kinnect for an integrated windows 8 metro ui? I wonder about the xbox live unification...

John_Read
John_Read

@SolidTy do u even own a gaming PC ?

StJimmy15
StJimmy15

um, if you can adjust the space requirements for that, then why do I have to be a football field away from my tv to use Kinect for 360?! *grumble grumble*

guitarist1980
guitarist1980

I am kinda surprised Microsoft is actually going to do this. Most people that use PC's don't really have a set up that would be ideal for Kinect. Could a lot of people install it and use it.. yeah probably, but ideal? I don't get it but I am slightly interested to see what it could do for me and my PC. I haven't tried WII, Motion Plus or Kinect yet.. I am one of those people that likes to spend money but for some reason up to this point it seems very gimicky.

Flint247
Flint247

Don't know why everyone is complaining over this. You are not being forced to buy one. If you want traditional controls, then use it. Why is everyone acting like this is the ONLY option to play? Can't others who enjoy it have their fun?

Flint247
Flint247

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

Zloth2
Zloth2

The PC should be able to do a lot with this outside of gaming. It will be interesting to see where it goes.

Jebril
Jebril

I like how this article failed to mention the Linux drivers for Kinect and how Kinect already has had programs developed for it under Linux. Oh well, Linux and anything out of the mainstream is treated just like Ron Paul. :|

zequex
zequex

Somewhere out there I hope there is a developer out there who can build software to sculpt a 3D object with your hands and change options with voice commands. I've dabbled in 3D modeling and I know why good games take 3-5 years to make. Cheers to the future!

XanderZane
XanderZane

@SeriousToast I don't know about the rest of you, but when I play a game, I prefer the screen, the game, and the controller. and preferably something to sit on. **************************************************************** Well, most gamers have been couch potatoes since the 70's. lol!! Not everyone embraces change, but for people that do, there's Kinect, Move and the Wii. Having different choices for gaming is never a bad thing. There are gamers who only play certain platforms and certain games, and it's because there are choices to do so.

RICEY42o
RICEY42o

Wow! I hope new one take a pictures.

Zee_Blade
Zee_Blade

I think I'd only want to try the PC Kinect if it allows me to manipulate windows like Minority Report

hippiesanta
hippiesanta

kinect belongs to PC.... to war against Ipad

Gam3Guy
Gam3Guy

I can't see them releasing this thing for games. It will be interesting to see what comes from independent devs but I won't hold my breath for a "high budget" game with Kinect features. I wouldn't be surprised to see Kinect functionality in Windows 8 though.

N-REAL
N-REAL

Now PC gamers are going to move like baboons....... :lol:

JakeAUS
JakeAUS

I'm not at all interested in the Kinect on Xbox, however.. I could see myself getting it for PC simply to use all the cool third-party applications that people will likely make for it.

svaubel
svaubel

It bombed on 360, I dont see why it wouldnt bomb on PC also. M$ treated Kinect as another console launch, yet here we are a year later and there is still next to nothing for its game library. Oooh, but we can navigate the console's menu now with our voice or waving our arms about.

onixevil
onixevil

this make me sure about the Xbox 360 games are playable on Windows 8 but i know disappointing people are disappointing for everything

gamerxzx
gamerxzx

I have heard rumors about windows 8 being able to play xbox 360 games and i think they are making this compatible to the PC to make kinect compatible games work on PC .

Trenchman
Trenchman

I never really cared too much for camera based games and software in the past and haven't really tried out the Kinect yet. But, I am kinda curious what people will do with it when it's on the more open PC platform.

darth_3pio
darth_3pio

50cm isn't too bad, it's about the length of my table keyboard to wall, and if I lean back in my seat when watching a movie that would be fine. *EDIT* Unless you're using a CRT, there is no disadvantage, I would place it on top of either the monitor if the tower was on the floor, or if the tower were behind the monitor on the desk, then on top of the tower, it would be fine. Remember height adds a little extra distance. Or did noone pass trigonometry?

Spartan_418
Spartan_418

i don't have one for 360 yet so if this is compatible with both, i might be interested. would be nice if they could upgrade the optics too, 640 x 480 is what you'd expect from a cheap cellphone camera

xcollector
xcollector

50 cm is still kinda far to be a mouse when I'm sitting by the keyboard. It could work though as a mouse supplement when I'm lying on the bed watching a video. But If it cost more than $50 and can't be used for both the 360 and PC I have little use for this.

Ronnie_Rim
Ronnie_Rim

@SeriousToast or keyboard/mouse :)

phillkillv2
phillkillv2

I can't wait to see people go all out with this tech.

SeriousToast
SeriousToast

I don't know about the rest of you, but when I play a game, I prefer the screen, the game, and the controller. and preferably something to sit on.

flashn00b
flashn00b

I imagine that this could allow indie developers to have their own brand of motion capture.

NoodleFighter
NoodleFighter

@XanderZane why don't they use the razer hydra :( ?

ZeroX91
ZeroX91

I wonder how long till it will be used in conjugation with a fleshli.... should probally just keep that thought to myself. lol

WCK619
WCK619

Maybe they should just make the Xbox more like a computer. The lost link between PC and console. Why go with one over the other. Why isn't it possible to combine the best of both options?

Triton
Triton

@jamiebullen I keep waiting on some news that will make me want to spend money on it, so yes I do keep reading. Thank you very much.

rarson
rarson

@v1c3er Yeah, there are head-tracking solutions for the PC, but they only do head-tracking. They're also a lot more cumbersome and require the user to wear something on their head. Kinect technology has the potential to transform into something like a Minority Report-style user interface someday.

rarson
rarson

This is cool, but I'm looking forward to a next-gen implementation of the technology. The resolution of the sensors isn't all that great and I'd love to see how the technology can be improved by using updated hardware. If I can buy one of these for under a hundred, I'll pick on up as soon as they start selling them.

v1c3er
v1c3er

The headtracking in forza4 is amazing, this technology definitly has future, oh and btw the pc already have a device that works like kinect (forgot the name)

OJ_the_LION
OJ_the_LION

Interesting. I doubt I'd use it much for actual hardcore games, but as with the 360 version, the most potential for this comes with apps. It's inadequate as a game controller, but awesome for other kinds of apps.

Evenios
Evenios

sounds fun i might have to get it :-)

HollowNinja
HollowNinja

I don't think this is necessarily for gaming. I imagine its uses will be mainly for other things.