Microsoft’s Kinect system adds motion-sensing technology to the Xbox 360 game console, allowing you to use your entire body as a game controller. The software company will start shipping a Kinect for Windows system in February for $249, allowing new forms of input for Windows-based software.
Now Microsoft is also reportedly working to develop a Kinect system that works with portable laptop computers. The Daily got a chance to check out some of the first netbook prototypes with built-in Kinect sensors.
Instead of relying on a piece of hardware that can be plugged into a computer, the prototypes are apparently Asus netbooks with a strip of sensors above the screen where you would normally find a webcam.
The idea is that users will be able to buy a netbook or notebook with the Kinect features included and use it not only to play games, but also to interact with other apps using gesture-based controls.
Intel showed off a similar feature when demonstrating concepts for upcoming ultrabooks at the Consumer Eletronics show earlier this month.
It’s not entirely clear whether that demo was run on a system with Microsoft Kinect integration or something else — but it does look like Intel agrees with Microsoft that notebooks could benefit from gesture-based controls.
Microsoft is looking to license its Kinect technology to laptop makers, so you probably won’t see an Xbox 360-branded Kinect laptop anytime soon, but you may see PC manfuacturers offer portable computers with Kinect motion-sensing technology built-in.