Report: Next Xbox requires always-on Kinect
by Andrew Yoon, shacknews.com, Feb 11, 2013 12:15PM PST
The next Xbox, codenamed Durango, will not only include an updated version of Kinect--it will require it. "It must be plugged in and calibrated for the console to even function," a new report on Kotaku reveals.
According to the site, Microsoft will include both Kinect and a hard drive in their next-gen console (both were optional accessories on Xbox 360). By making their use mandatory, developers will be able to make games with both peripherals in mind.
The camera has been greatly improved, being able to track up to six skeletons at once, versus two in the current-gen model. In addition, the new Kinect can keep track of five additional joints per person. According to Kotaku, the improved resolution of the camera will allow it to "instantly identify a person," making "automatic player identification" a part of the Xbox experience. While the convenience of not having to log-in will be nice, it could also lead to restricting content based on who Kinect identifies--something Redmond had patented many months ago. Using this tech could restrict the "number of user views, a number of user views over time, a number of simultaneous user views, views tied to user identities, views limited to user age or any variation or combination thereof."
In terms of hardware spec, Durango has been rumored to be largely identical with Orbis, the next PlayStation. Digital Foundry offers a comparison, detailing the slight differences in approach the two companies are taking with their next consoles.