Microsoft’s Kinect technology has had a really tough life. Once she was a great beacon of hope, now she is being buried for the second time. Anyone who needs the appropriate technology in the future will probably have to turn to other providers.
Small demand remained
The Kinect system was supposed to be a success a number of years ago, primarily as a new input system on the Xbox game console. At its core, these were cameras with depth perception that could recognize and interpret the movements and gestures of users in space. This made new games possible. However, the product never caught on on a larger scale.
However, there were always interested users who found completely different areas of application for Kinect. So it happened that Microsoft officially discontinued the system in 2017, but two years later included the Azure Kinect Developer Kit in its offer again. Anyone who needed good object recognition for certain areas of application could continue to work with this.
But now Microsoft is also discontinuing the sale of the Kinect kit, the company said. Anyone who would like to purchase one of the remaining Azure Kinect Developer Kits still has the chance until the end of October – or “while stocks last,” explained Swati Mehta from Microsoft. Anyone who already has a corresponding system should be able to continue using it after Microsoft has left the company.
Alternatives are there
“As the needs of our customers and partners evolve, we regularly update our products to best serve them,” said Mehta. “This includes occasionally introducing new capabilities, but also retiring products. We have made the decision to discontinue production of the Azure Kinect Developer Kit.”
However, he pointed out that this is not the end of this technology, as it will continue to be available through Microsoft’s partner ecosystem – just from the Redmond company itself. An alternative is the Femto Bolt from Orbbec, which is the depth camera module of Azure that uses Kinect Developer Kits.
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