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Get an Xbox One Kinect Sensor for only £129 from Microsoft... wait, are you serious?!

Jonathan Lester
Kinect, Microsoft, Xbox One

Get an Xbox One Kinect Sensor for only £129 from Microsoft... wait, are you serious?!

Xbox One Kinect Sensor | Microsoft | £129.99
Xbox One review | Kinect Voice Commands Guide

Did you pick up a Kinect-less Xbox One and want to add voice command functionality to the Xbox experience? Fancy trying out auto sign-in and playing the tiny number of Kinect-enabled games the way they were meant to be experienced? Well you'll soon be in luck, because Microsoft are releasing the standalone Kinect sensor for the bargain price of...

... £129.99?!

This deal is over. Now it's ranting time.

The numbers just don't add up. At RRP, an Xbox One Kinect bundle costs £429.99, whereas the Kinect-less console will set you back £349.99. Since the Kinect sensor has now been confirmed at £129.99, this brings the total to £479.98: thus a cool £50 more expensive than the original bundle deemed too expensive by consumers in the first place.

This is... actually a good move in and of itself. Microsoft has to make the Kinect bundle look like a better value proposition if they plan to salvage any hope of Kinect being a relevant part of the Xbox One ecosystem. New consumers should feel like they're making a saving on the sensor by getting it with their console, then become used to it as a core component of the user experience. I 'get' that. Unfortunately, this logic only works if the peripheral is already selling gangbusters and supports a wide range of compatible software.

But it isn't. And it doesn't.

Get an Xbox One Kinect Sensor for only £129 from Microsoft... wait, are you serious?!

Kinect's voice commands may be useful and impressive, it's auto sign-in is seriously good fun, AV control is great and it brings a lot of convenience to the console, but Microsoft hasn't really given us gamers a gaming reason to own it. Kinect Sports Rivals? Indiscriminate multiplayer voice chat that broadcasts everyone in the lounge? A free copy of Dance Central Spotlight with new standalone units? There's no real reason for new Xbox One customers to spend out that extra money on a Kinect sensor versus the cheaper console package right now... so they're not.

And at £129.99, they're never going to pick one up. Never. Unless they grab one for £25 from CEX, who've now gone out of stock as canny resellers-in-the-making have already raided their supplies.

Microsoft had to release a standalone version of Kinect, but they probably should have taken the opportunity to take a good long look at their manufacturing to bring out a cheaper model. Kinect needs a slim version more than its parent console does!

Look: I love the Kinect sensor, but I fear that we'll see the peripheral go the way of its predecessor. The original Kinect lead to major advances in education, robotics, engineering and countless applications outside of gaming since it provided a solid depth sensor at a fraction of the price of competing devices. The PC version of Kinect 2 will probably go even further, especially if it can tie into the resurgent VR market.

But, once again, it'll probably revolutionise everything except videogames. Especially at £129.99. You could buy a 3DS or Vita for that.

Or three PS4 cameras.

Perhaps I'm wrong. Would you pick up a Kinect sensor for £129.99? Let us know in the comments!

Add a comment8 comments
googleberry  Aug. 29, 2014 at 11:29

Would you pick up a Kinect sensor for £129.99?


socialjeebus  Aug. 29, 2014 at 12:19

Wow, that is mental.

They've effectively euthanised Kinect.

I thought 50 quid for the PS4 Camera was bad.

phil16  Aug. 29, 2014 at 12:50

Gosh. Nice way to kill it I guess...

TungstenShark  Aug. 29, 2014 at 12:51

I know that it seems mad but I don't actually believe that Microsoft think that this is going to tempt any gamers. It’s more a case of getting it on to the market as a separate item and seeing who it sells to and what happens to it. MS effectively acknowledged that the Kinect has a life outside of consoles when they released the SDK for the original Kinect and this is just a continuation. As they've now released v2 of the SDK it’s actually a good thing that they're not making you buy a whole console to play with it.

They're also hampered because £129 is the cost of the original Kinect in their store


Pricing the Kinect 2 either above or below that price would send all sorts of mixed messages so they've taken the decision to go in at the same level.

The bottom line is that the Kinect suffers from exactly the same problems that affect the Vita and which you outline in your recent article. If no one is developing AAA games for it at least it's out in the world looking for another purpose in life.

JonLester  Aug. 29, 2014 at 12:57

@TungstenShark: A good point well-made :)


All I'd say is that the Xbox One Kinect sensor is a totally different SKU/model to the PC version, and is not compatible or useful for any of these new applications due to its proprietary cabling. In effect, gamers are its only market.

Yes, it's also going to be £30 cheaper, but arguably it's not enough.

Last edited by JonLester, Aug. 29, 2014 at 13:16
TungstenShark  Aug. 29, 2014 at 14:09


the Xbox One Kinect sensor is a totally different SKU/model

OK, so I admit you've sunk the first part of my argument :D but I'd still argue that its not a big surprise that they've gone in at that price point when you compare it to where the first version is.

If anything given how staggering inept MS usually are when it comes to pricing it could have been a whole lot worse!

Last edited by TungstenShark, Aug. 29, 2014 at 14:33
Anarchist  Aug. 29, 2014 at 15:30

They should have concentrated on getting a Kinect extension cable to market, first... They would certainly have sold more of them than standalone kinects.


lloydK  Aug. 29, 2014 at 21:33

Feel sorry for the PC crowd who did all that cool stuff with the first Kinect, for them it's a cool £160 because there's an adapte that converts the Kinect cable to USB.


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