Microsoft's Yusuf Mehdi has confirmed that removing the Kinect could leave the Xbox One with more processing power for games.
Microsoft pleased more than a few potential Xbox owners yesterday when it announced that will be releasing a Kinect-less version of the Xbox One this June that will retail for hundred smackeroos less than the current $499 version. That being the case, recent comments from Microsoft executives has indicated that dropping the Kinect could improve more than just the console's price.
According to Yusuf Mehdi, Microsoft's corporate vice president for devices and studios, the reversal of the company's mandatory Kinect policy could potentially lead to the console having more processing power to divert toward games. This boost would come from parts of the Xbox Ones's architecture that, currently, are devoted to running the Kinect. With the Kinect now an optional peripheral, the company is apparently considering new ways to use up the space previously devoted to it.
"We are in discussions with our game publishers about what we might do in this space," said Mehdi. "We will have more to talk about soon."
Despite this, Mehdi also affirmed that Microsoft is very much still devoted to the Kinect and its original vision for the Xbox One. "We remain deeply committed to the Kinect as a core component of a next-generation console," he said. "We think that the bio-metric sign-in, voice controls of the menu, ability to say 'record that' and capture a moment of gameplay are all critical to the experience. We have never wavered from that since the launch."
Suffice it to say we'll be interested to see how strong this commitment remains if the $399 Xbox One sells better than its Kinect-equipped counterpart.