Microsoft: Kinect PC More Expensive Because It's 'Subsidized By Consumers'

During its CES Keynote, Microsoft unveiled the impending release of Kinect for Windows, an announcement that has raised the ire of some consumers. In the US Kinect costs $150, but the PC version is tentatively priced at $250. According to the Kinect for Windows blog, the reason for the PC price hike is the that the Xbox 360 version is "subsidized by consumers."

"The ability to sell Kinect for Xbox 360 at its current price point is in large part subsidized by consumers buying a number of Kinect games, subscribing to Xbox LIVE, and making other transactions associated with the Xbox 360 ecosystem," claims the blog. "In addition, the Kinect for Xbox 360 was built for and tested with the Xbox 360 console only, which is why it is not licensed for general commercial use, supported or under warranty when used on any other platform."

It's an interesting observation, and one that gives us an insight into precisely what it is Microsoft is attempting to achieve the Kinect for Windows. On Xbox, as you'd expect, it's primary function is interface navigation and games. On Windows, Microsoft seems keen to take advantage of the kind of innovation seen in the numerous Kinect mods we've seen in the past year or so.


    Makes sense I guess.

    Then again I don't see it selling to well for the average PC user, seeing as most users for this device are people 'hacking' it, which they'll simply get the cheap version and modify it.

    "But even though there are many people out there who have done the legwork of adapting the hardware to the PC and taking the technology in new directions only possible on the PC format, we will not be taking their efforts into account.
    "We will, however, be taking advantage of that initiative and inginuity"
    I'd sooner buy a 360 kinect and pay an inventive modder for his work than pay the extra $100 for a "PC" kinect.

    Can't I just plug my 360 Kinect into my PC? What's the difference: software? It would honestly be better if Microsoft just said: the software that comes with Kinect for PC is $100. Then you could "buy" the software separately and use your 360 Kinect.


      Yeah they've made A LOT of PR missteps lately.

      I don't see why we can't buy some sort of PC software and use the existing Kinect??

        I saw an article a few weeks back that said the PC kinect has relocated cameras etc due to people sitting closer to it, so basicly optimized for a computer desk setup. That could be speculation though.

      Yes you can use the 360 kinect on PC.. there was some transcript, where as the PC version requires the PC SDK to run or something. Bah.. was reading it earlier... cant remember where.

    This is the company that charges $150 for a 250gb hard drive, I don't think anyone is going to be surprised by this

    I'm sure LIVE subscribers will be thrilled to know that their monthly fees are propping up the market for the Kinect rather than maintaining their online gaming infrastructure.

      I'm sure realistic LIVE subscribers understand that their monthly subscription generates revenue for the company providing the service, and that said revenue will be used by the company to invest in and maintain that and other services that will continue to generate revenue.

        +1 Its lovely when rational people who live in the real world comment

        Sure, it's a reality of business, but that doesn't mean you have to like it. Any rational consumer would prefer to get a discount on their own product (LIVE subs) than know they were subsidising another person's product (Kinect) to the same amount, so long as that attitude didn't undermine the viability of their own product - which in this case, it would not.

          Rod... It's like.. you don't... yeah that's it. You don't understand how things work!

    Microsoft: Kinect PC More Expensive Because It’s ‘Subsidized By Consumers’...that, and we find price gouging the best alternative for viagra.

    My xbox kinnect was 98 dollars Australian and I got it about 6 months after release from Big W.

    If the only reason for the price difference is consumer subsidy, then I'd happily pay $100 less and just connect it to my PC. Anyone with half a brain would do the same, unless there is a reason the PC one is better - maybe it incorporates the adapter and uses a real USB port and external power? Just speculating, but there has to be another reason, else people will just buy the Xbox version instead.

    No thanks. I would rather just buy the 360 one and hack it into the PC. Kind of a silly thing to charge that much more if you ask me.

    Doesn't the PC version have a different lense so you can sit closer to the camera at a desk?

    Australian retail price $450

      Australian article. Australian price.

      Kinect for 360 on launch was $199 AUD. It is now $150, or $99 on sale (depending on store)

      Kinect on PC will be $249 AUD.

      LOL!! You might wanna pay attention next time you read.

        Actually the article pretty clearly says,

        "In the US Kinect costs $150, but the PC version is tentatively priced at $250"

        If you're gonna nitpick make sure you're right! ;)

    So..... what's the difference?

    The PC Kinect comes with software to make it work on PC, while the 360 version is the camera and Kinect Adventures?

    Why!?!? Why not just sell the 360 version of Kinect without Kinect Adventures and release a sofwatre CD to go alongside it? People with 360 Kinects can buy the software and plug it straight into their PC's then.

    Makes sense, right?

    I knew they would start doing this.

    Every time a company did something minor but irritating or amoral, where people defended it with, "But it's just business! They're only trying to make a profit!"

    Every time they changed the way they sold products to get you to support their actions rather than their product (DLC, Digital Distro, buying things to 'support' the makers over the worth of the product itself.)

    Eventually they would figure out that they could get away with whatever they did as long as you understood the "business" reasoning.


    I understand that it may well be very useful for certain things, but can anyone explain to me why i would want to use this in place of a mouse for 99% of things?

    I do have an xbox and a kinect and it tracks well , on a console you can forgive the latency given you don't have a faster option.

    On a pc i am quite sure i can not only work faster with the mouse but far more accurately....

    Again, not even sure why most people would want one of these on the pc *shrug*

      It is the cheapest motion capture device on the market. Or at least, it was with the Xbox360 version. I am not sure if it is still cheap[est after the price hike for PC.

      You don't use it to replace a mouse. You use it for mo-cap.

    And people are actually going to buy this?

    I'll just go live in a cave and build a real fireplace.

    And yet those that reverse engineered the original models came to the conclusion that it cost $50 to manufacture the thing.

    You can buy an adaptor to make the xbox kinect fit your PC for less than $20 on ebay. Been playing deadspace with it (which is super fun btw, stomp stomp stomp)

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