Despite rumours to the contrary, Microsoft has clarified that it has “no plans” to release the Xbox One sans Kinect. In an interview with Eurogamer, the company’s UK marketing chief Harvey Eagle reaffirmed that the motion sensor remains a fundamental component of the console’s user experience.
“[A Kinect-less Xbox One] is not in our plans at all. As we’ve said from the very beginning, we believe Kinect is an absolutely integral part of the Xbox One experience.”
Following news that the PlayStation 4 is outselling Microsoft’s system by 2-to-1, many expected the company to release a simplified Xbox One SKU that would remove the mandatory peripheral from the equation. However, Eagle referred to the console’s Upload Studio, which allows players to share their gameplay with the Xbox Live community, as an example of the Kinect’s practicality.
“Look at all the thousands and thousands of game clips that have been posted by gamers to Upload Studio, of their gaming highlights, captured by speaking the words ‘Xbox record that’, which has already become part of Xbox vocabulary.”
Upon the launch of the Xbox One, the motion sensor drew criticism from the gaming community after it was revealed that it would need to be powered on in order for the console to function. As such, Microsoft revised this policy, though the add-on remained bundled with the console regardless.
Keen to build on the device’s somewhat shaky image, Eagle also teased the announcement of several Kinect-oriented games currently in development, which will likely be revealed during the company’s press conference at E3 in June. At this time, there are only a handful of titles that require the peripheral to play, such as Kinect Sports Rivals and Xbox Fitness, although it seems Microsoft will bolster this software lineup sooner rather than later.