Microsoft says Xbox One will never sell without Kinect

Microsoft executive Phil Harrison shoots down any hope for an Xbox One bundle that does not include the Kinect motion controller.

James Martin/CNET

Microsoft has already backpedaled on the requirement that its next-generation Xbox One console require the Kinect motion controller to be plugged in at all times. However, that's not deterring the company's plans to keep the Kinect a mandatory addition to any future console bundles.

"Xbox One is Kinect. They are not separate systems. An Xbox One has chips, it has memory, it has Blu-ray, it has Kinect, it has a controller. These are all part of the platform ecosystem," Phil Harrison, a Microsoft corporate vice president, told CVG in response to a question on whether or not the Xbox One will ever be sold without the Kinect.

The inclusion of Microsoft's next-gen motion controller is a core factor in the price difference between the Xbox One -- selling for $499 -- and Sony's PlayStation 4, which will retail for $399.

In the wide-reaching interview, Harrison touched on a number of subjects involving the torrent of controversy surrounding Microsoft's console, from the profitability of video game consoles in the long run to the mysterious lack of release date for the Xbox One. (Microsoft is still mum on the latter.)

And while it's not far-fetched to think that the company could at some point backtrack on its Kinect bundle strategy, as it has with a multitude of poorly received features, Harrison seems intent on selling the Kinect as an integral part of Xbox's future. To him, the Kinect makes the experience more magical.

"I have an Xbox One at home, and being able to walk in and say 'Xbox on,' and for the system to recognize me, launch and load my profile, and put my choices of content on the font page is a very magical experience," he said. "It makes you think about your relationship with technology in a slightly different way. It's personal. It makes you think, I wish more devices would do this."

About the author

Nick Statt is a staff reporter for CNET News covering Microsoft, gaming, and technology you sometimes wear. He previously wrote for ReadWrite, was a news associate at the social-news app Flipboard, and his work has appeared in Popular Science and Newsweek. When not complaining about Bay Area bagel quality, he can be found spending a questionable amount of time contemplating his relationship with video games.

 

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