Uh oh - Kinect doesn't seem to

Well, my in-depth market analysis doesn’t bode well for the Kinect.  

The in-depth market analysis in this case consists of walking down the aisles at Fry’s.  Here we are, a month and a half before the holiday break, a week after the Kinect launch, and there’s one kinect on display at Fry’s which is being…ignored.  

Passers-by were glancing at it, but not stopping.  The few that did stop seemed too intimidated to try it, especially when the tutorial prompt for the dance game came on with the 15 starting moves you needed to know.  I saw one kid use it in the space of 20 minutes.  He ended up shrugging his shoulders and walking away apologetically.

Now, anyone who remembers when the Wii debuted will remember the lines to try the thing.  You’ll remember the feeling of rightness and ease of the controller, the cheerful simplicity of bowling, tennis or golf in the Wii Sports package, and the goofy smiles of even the most convicted anti-gaming Moms as they watched the magical new way of easily interacting with the games.  Kinect doesn’t seem to be delivering that, at all.

If you already have an xbox will you buy a Kinect?  Probably.  Doubtless it will make some real money for Microsoft.  But it really doesn’t seem to come close to changing the game of games at all, which is a shame and a disappointment.


Reader Comments (2)

'not changing the game of games'? sure has the potential to change how users interact with computers and other appliances. Game use could be the tip of the iceberg.

December 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBharath Modayur

Well, there's two different questions here:

1. Does the Kinect change the balance of power between game platforms, the way that the introduction of the Wii did (largely because of the novel controller interface)?

2. Will we start to see more interfaces that move away from tactile contact?

I agree with you that #2 is a yes - though I don't think I'll credit the Kinect with that breathrough. I maintain that #1 is a no, though it will make Microsoft a bunch of money.

December 1, 2010 | Registered CommenterJohn Rae-Grant

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