Xbox: Microsoft’s Xbox doc series has uncovered many fun facts about the brand since its inception, including the idea and motivation behind the launch of Kinect.
In episode 5 of the documentary, available for free on the Xbox YouTube channel, fans discovered that the device released for the Xbox 360 emerged as a way to take on Nintendo and ride the wave of popularity for the Wii and its motion controllers.
Launched in late 2006, the Big N console made history by pleasing both gamers and the more casual, offering an experience quite different from what was available in the market until then.
Seeing an opportunity there, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates would have put pressure on his team to find an answer worthy of the Wii controllers. According to Phil Spencer, current Xbox boss, Gates would have complained that his team had “missed” the rise of the motion control craze, being left behind by the Japanese game maker.
Luckily for the team responsible for the Xbox, research related to the topic was already being developed at the company, using body mapping with depth sensors and RBG cameras.
Even though Kinect’s launch didn’t really pick up as the tech giant had hoped, the result doesn’t seem to have bothered either. For Xbox, the creation of the device would have been important for the industry, besides having sold 10 million units in the first 60 days after its launch.