Microsoft is once again backtracking on what seemed like a firm commitment to not unbundle the Kinect motion-sensing device from their next generation console. As part of a campaign to deliver more choices for fans, the company announced on Tuesday that a Kinect-free Xbox One is indeed in the works.
With the Redmond-based company as it relates to the Xbox One, we’ve learned to never say never.
Microsoft’s Xbox chief Phil Spencer said in a press release that the unbundled Xbox One will launch on June 9 priced at $399 and will be sold in all regions. The current bundle will continue to be sold at the existing $499 price point while a standalone Kinect sensor will be sold later this year for those who purchase the unbundled version but later decide they want it. No word yet on how much the accessory will retail for, however.
The decision no doubt comes as a result of lagging sales versus Sony’s PlayStation 4. Both consoles launched around the same time late last year but the PS4 got off to an early lead which it has yet to relinquish.
Most credit the PS4’s early success to pricing as it sells for $100 less than the Xbox One. Today’s news, however, puts the two systems on an even playing field in terms of price. But will that be enough to sway buyers over to Microsoft’s camp?