The Xbox One everyone wants?

Microsoft first announced the Xbox One almost a year ago, and I am guessing for them it has been a long year. Today sees the announcement of the (probably) last reversal of there more contentious ideas. Today is the day that they announced that as of the 9th of June, you will be about a buy an Xbox One without a Kinect. This will cost £349 in UK and $399 in the US, which is, perhaps unsurprisingly, the price of a PS4.

Having seen the Xbone with a Kinect for sale at around this price previously anyway (like the Titanfall bundle which was £399 including a £50 game), this doesn’t come as a huge shock. However to have Microsoft officially concede that there is a need to offer the Xbox One without the Kinect is the biggest reversal of policy, in a long line of reversals. Bearing in mind when the Xbone was first announced it was going to always online and refuse pre-owned games.

Whilst I am sure that there were a few people put off by the extra expense that the Kinect added the console, which apparently would have cost about the same as a PS4 without it.  Particularly when you consider that, to my knowledge, there has never been what you would call a must have kinect game on the 360, and no signs of being one on the, erm, One.

There were other concerns why people didn’t want the Kinect. The way Microsoft explained the Xbone, made it sound like it was constantly watching and listening to you, but, y’know, not in a creepy way. In a helpful fun way, sort of like if netflix paid a random stranger to stand in your living room, and he occasionally chimed in with a movie you might like. See nothing creepy at all. Oh and apparently Microsoft share data with various government agencies, but y’know, not in a creepy way.

So a kinect free Xbone is a good thing, undoubtedly. Whether it will help Microsoft sales, I don’t know. It certainly puts them on a more even setting with Sony, as they are certainly trailing Sony in terms of sales at the moment. It is a lot easier to compare which console you would prefer when they are the same price and functionally very similar.
Actually just as I was writing this I have been proven wrong, Microsoft had yet another reversal up it’s sleeve. They are also removing the, frankly ridiculously stupid, stipulation that you had to be a Xbox Live Gold member to be able to use streaming services and free apps, like Netflix, Youtube and Skype. And there are further rumours that they are extending the Games with Gold promotion to Xbox One. Humm it seems to have taken a lot of shaming, bad press and (relatively) poor sales, but Microsoft are finally making the right moves.

Twitter @hangmansj0e

XBox One – Friend or Foe?

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