We all know the Xbox One will launch this November bundled with the Kinect, but a new rumor insists that shortly after launch Microsoft will release two additional versions of the system, both without the Kinect peripheral.
According to an anonymous source speaking with Machinima's Inside Gaming, two more bundles will be made available sometime around summer 2014: a standard Xbox One system without the Kinect, and an even cheaper version with a smaller hard drive and no Kinect.
While demand for the current Xbox One with Kinect is "through the roof," there's still a fairly large amount of consumers still skepitcal about the peripheral. Some dislike the idea of it "always watching," while others just don't want to fork over the extra $100. No doubt that ditching the Kinect and offering the system more competitive with the PlayStation 4's price will attract more buyers.
Of course, there's just one small hitch to this — the fact that it contradicts everything Microsoft has been saying this whole time. Microsoft has repeatedly said that the Xbox One won't function without the Kinect attached. So how will the system work without one included?
Microsoft has already (quietly) admitted that the Xbox One can still be enjoyed with the Kinect paused or turned off; in most cases, the Kinect is only listening for the voice command to turn on the system, but you can even turn that feature off too. It seems the Xbox One can work without the Kinect operating, so it stands to reason that it could be enjoyed without the Kinect attached at all. As Inside Gaming points out, it's likely that Microsoft just doesn't want to flat out say it yet because they hope to ship the current bundle and get as many Kinects into homes as possible. In other words, Microsoft wants to get people invested in the Kinect early in order to convince developers to make Kinect-centric games and features.
As for the smaller hard drive version, this is believed to exist only to undercut the PlayStation 4's attractive $400 price. The Kinect-less Xbox One is believed to be priced around $400, while the smaller hard drive version is expected to be even less than that — possibly around the $350 range.
Remember, none of this is confirmed and in this day and age, it's quite easy for "anonymous sources" to make up blatant lies and spread it throughout the internet. But honestly, this would be a smart move from Microsoft regardless. I personally have no interest in the Kinect (especially at $500); but, I am all for a cheaper version that would allow me to eventually purchase both systems.
Have you already pre-ordered your Xbox One? If not, will a cheaper version without the Kinect help sway your decision? For me, it's all about the price; I like the idea of the Kinect but I just can't dish out $500 right now.