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Finger tracking rumoured for Kinect

Finger tracking rumoured for Kinect

Microsoft's Kinect could get finger-tracking capabilities, according to an unnamed source.

Microsoft's Kinect, which enables gamers to control Xbox 360 games just by flailing around, looks set to get significantly more sensitive. According to the grapevine, finger-tracking capabilities are set to appear in the near future.

At least, that's the claim from an unnamed source talking to Eurogamer. The informer says the Kinect team is working hard on increasing the amount of data that the USB-connected peripheral can stream to the Xbox 360.

According to the source, Kinect can currently only use around 15MB/sec of the 35MB/sec of the bandwidth available to the USB controller, in order to keep some bandwidth free for other USB peripherals. This has the knock-on effect of limiting the resolution of data gathered by the Kinect's depth sensor to just 320 x 240 at 30fps.

However, the team is reportedly working on either switching off the reserved bandwidth limitation, or increasing the efficiency of the stream compression to improve the quality of data received from the depth sensor. This could potentially enable the Kinect's sensor to detect positional data at a more impressive resolution of 640 x 480.

If true, this could lead to future Kinect titles tracking the rotation of a hand, and even individual fingers. This is currently impossible on the device, given the relatively low-resolution positioning data received from the Kinect's depth sensor.

Microsoft, for its part, hasn't responded to the claims, but clearly the company needs to do something to keep its Kinect system competitive against the likes of Sony's Move.

Could finger-tracking persuade you to buy a Kinect, or is it just another gimmick? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

11 Comments

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V3ctor 21st December 2010, 08:24 Quote
So... When I loose I can have my revenge!! Kudos Microsoft XD
Xir 21st December 2010, 08:31 Quote
It's good, non casual games that are missing for me.
WII, Kinect, Move...it's all just wave wave wave hihihi!

Now while that's nice, i'm missing innovation.
Darkedge 21st December 2010, 08:52 Quote
improvements will be good, I think we have alot to come from Kinect in the future
proxess 21st December 2010, 08:57 Quote
But will it detect colour people?
Toploaded 21st December 2010, 09:15 Quote
Kinect is racist and is more progressively so the darker skinned one is, and Move look would not look out of place being sold in Ann Summers, this my friends, is the future of console gaming.

Jokes aside, if Kinect really could track finger movements, and was fully supported by MS to be PC compatible, some great things could come from it I'm sure.
BioSniper 21st December 2010, 09:38 Quote
I'd prefer a firmware update that allows it to work in slightly smaller rooms to be honest.
javaman 21st December 2010, 10:26 Quote
Shouldn't it have done this from the start? Developers push things out that are half complete or broken, look at the STALKER series or anything by bethsaida. The original xbox had problems that proper testing would have highlighted and prevented. Kinda goes back to the blog post on here a couple of days ago about the death of demo's. Companies use betas now for quality control but so often reports from those betas goes unheard. Look how many people mentioned latancy as a problem yet microsoft conveniently ignored it.
Fordy 21st December 2010, 10:36 Quote
Could be cool, for FPS etc. f it was reliable enough.

Sitting in an armchair holding an air gun (as in air guitar, not as in.. airgun lol), Kinect detecting movement on your trigger finger.
Woodspoon 21st December 2010, 13:17 Quote
Thats right new ultra sensitivity for Kinect available soon for £xxx.xx
Fizzban 21st December 2010, 15:43 Quote
So what would happen if I flipped it the bird?
bobwya 21st December 2010, 17:34 Quote
Looks like the robotics researchers and hacking community are blowing MS - at developing for their own device... Lol fail. Bye, bye Steve.
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