The Kinect, originally billed as Project Natal, launched in 2010. Since then, hardcore gamers have remained largely apathetic to Microsoft’s attempt at trend-chasing the hugely successful Nintendo Wii. The Kinect has had it’s problems since day one on the Xbox 360, with the primary complaints being the lack of accuracy of the sensors, as well as the gimmicky nature of the device and games. These problems didn’t stop Microsoft from shoving the peripheral out with the Xbox One in November 2013 when the console launched.
This apparently caused the price of the launch model to jump all the way up to $499 USD, a high price for a motion-camera that most people won’t use. And it feels like both gamers and developers are on the same side here. Both groups seem to want a Kinect-less variant of the new console for a cheaper price.
These views are echoed by Peter Molyneux. The legendary designed once helped Microsoft promote the product, and he’s now turned against it a fair bit.
“I actually wish Kinect wasn’t a requirement,” says Molyneux. “It feels like an unnecessary add-on to me. Maybe it’s because we’re in England, and it doesn’t really use the TV stuff, but it feels more and more like a joke.” He said of the device. “They could cost-reduce it [by removing Kinect]. I’m sure they’re going to release an Xbox One without Kinect. It would be unthinkable that they wouldn’t.”
Xbox boss Phil Spencer isn’t as convinced that it’s as big of an issue. “Kinect-less Xbox One is not the number one request of consumers, its great games” says Spencer. The claims are stacking up against his idea though, at least in regards to demand for Kinect. “We’re always trying to match what consumers are asking for,” Spencer said. “I always want to make sure that we’re in tune with what current or potential customers are asking for from us. Right now, [dropping Kinect is] not the number one request from people. Usually it’s, ‘Where are the great games?’