Microsoft Kinect is an 'interactive method' accessory for the Xbox 360. The device sits close to your television, similar to the Wii sensor bar, and includes both a regular and infrared cameras. This lets the device perform functions such as image recognition through the regular camera, and motion tracking through the IR sensors. Microsoft is touting Natal as a breakthrough in control schemes one-upping Nintendo's Wii-mote as your body is the controller. The Natal also contains a microphone that allows the software to be enhanced with voice recognition technology.
Demo'd during the 2009 E3 conference very little actual footage was shown of the device in real world situations, other than a brief manufactured promotional video and a small sample of prototype applications. From the conference Microsoft is making it clear that the Natal is targeted towards the casual expanded audience that Nintendo has captured with the Wii. Speculations on release date and price point are rampant, but nothing has been confirmed or even indicated.
- image capture through camera
- 3D depth perception using IR sensor
- voice recognition through built-in microphone
- facial capture
- track multiple people simultaneously
- compatible with all Xbox 360s
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