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Next Generation Kinect for Windows Not Coming until 2014

by Brandon Russell | May 23, 2013May 23, 2013 7:30 pm PDT

XBox One - Kinect - Sensor - Side - Large

Microsoft’s new Kinect sensor is much improved—three times as sensitive—over the company’s current motion-sensing tech, and it’s not only coming to the Xbox One, but Windows. According to a new blog post from Microsoft on Thursday, the next generation Kinect for Windows will come out next year, though a precise timeframe, or even a vague one, wasn’t shared. Your heartbeat is safe for now.

What’s so exciting about the new Kinect is how crazy in-depth its motion sensing capabilities are. Thanks to improvements in fidelity, field of view, skeletal tracking and the addition of active infrared tech, the Kinect can pick out wrinkles on your t-shirt and even see you in the dark. That can lead to all kinds of new use-cases; it’s just a matter of developers creating those experiences.

Probably the most impressive aspect is Kinect’s improved skeleton mapping, which can track individual hand motions and even simple body language like a shoulder shrug. Microsoft points to enhanced rehabilitation and physical fitness solutions as potential use-cases—that doesn’t even cover how games might be improved.

So Kinect won’t just have a place in your living room, but everywhere that Windows is available. What does that mean for you? That’s up for developers to decide. When Microsoft’s Build 2013 conference kicks off in June, the company says developers will get a chance to begin preparing for the new tech.


Brandon Russell

Brandon Russell enjoys writing about technology and entertainment. When he's not watching Back to the Future, you can find him on a hike or watching...