Xbox One voice commands only work in five markets at launch

Written by David Hing

August 30, 2013 // 7:47 a.m.

Tags: #kinect #microsoft #xbox-one

The Xbox One's bundled Kinect will only be able to respond to voice commands in five markets at the console's launch.

Barking orders at your new Microsoft console will only work if you are a resident of the UK, the US, Canada, France or Germany. All other territories will not have access to this functionality.

The rest of the Kinect's features will be unaffected by this omission.

This information was issued in the small print at the very bottom of an Xbox One overview piece on Xbox.com.

When or indeed if Microsoft intends to bring voice commands to other markets is at present unclear.

The Xbox One is heading for a November launch across 13 markets. Outside of the five receiving voice command functionality, it will also be launched in Australia, Austria, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Spain and New Zealand.

The initial announcement at E3 originally pegged the launch for 21 markets with Belgium, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, Norway, Russia, Sweden and Switzerland also targeted. Now however the new console is launching in these regions in 2014.

The dropping of these was attributed by Microsoft to Kinect localisation issues, an excuse that now appears puzzling in light of the limited accessibility of voice commands across other launch markets.

The nature of the Xbox One has been steadily changing since its announcement at E3 earlier this year. Microsoft dropped its controversial game registering feature that would have cut out the entire used game market for the console and also recently announced that the new Kinect bundled with the machine would not need to be constantly active for the Xbox One to operate.

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