Kinect for Windows v2 Gets Down to Business
It's no game. At the Build conference, Microsoft makes the business argument for developing with the company's upgraded sensor technology.Microsoft is gearing up for the release of Kinect for Windows v2, an updated version of the motion-sensing peripheral that ships with the Xbox One. At the Build developer conference in San Francisco, the company demonstrated some of the capabilities that the new sensor will provide when it launches this summer in a bid to popularize the technology among a wide variety of software coders, not just video game makers. The original Kinect for the Xbox 360 video game console was a big hit among hardware hackers in 2010. Microsoft, after an initial bout of resistance, later released a compatible version of the add-on for Windows PCs, enabling coders and hardware enthusiasts to develop software and devices that could leverage the relatively low-cost hardware's 3D sensing capabilities. On Nov. 22, 2013, Microsoft launched the Xbox One, this time bundling a newer, more powerful version of the Kinect with each and every console. Using Build as a backdrop, the software giant is signaling that developers will soon be able to leverage Kinect for Windows v2's new hardware to enable advanced interactive computing experiences. During an April 2 keynote presentation at Build, Terry Myerson, executive vice president of Microsoft's Operating Systems group, showed how the company plans to build off the momentum provided by original Kinect for Windows. Referring to the response to the device as "pretty phenomenal," he revealed that the SDK had been downloaded more than 1 million times and that the device had attracted "over 400,000 active developers."
The upgraded hardware will enable developers to create more flexible motion and 3D sensing applications. Kinect for Windows v2 features a "1080P camera with an incredibly wide field of view, so you can now build applications where the subject is much closer to the camera or works in a much smaller room."