Microsoft clarifies new Xbox Live scheme, no incentive for early Kinect bundle adopters

By Stephany Nunneley, Tuesday, 13 May 2014 21:27 GMT

Microsoft dropped all kinds of news this morning alongside its Kinect-less $399 bundle for Xbox One.

Xbox One

This news consisted of Deals with Gold and Games with Gold coming to Xbox One, and the fact that many apps would no longer require an Xbox Live Gold sub, just an Internet connection.

Many people were pleased with this news because they no longer have to fork over a double sub just to use HBOgo and the like through XBL.

Now, just because you no longer need a sub for some things, doesn’t mean you won’t for everything: this includes MMOs whether they are sub-based or free-to-play, such as The Elder Scrolls Online, and World of Tanks, respectively.

Granted, that much is obvious, because if that situation had been changed, otherwise, Microsoft would surely have announced it. Still, the more you know etc.

Those who were early adopters of the console also won’t be handed any incentives for forking over cash early for a Kinect bundle. This is obvious news as well, as it too would have been announced. But that’s one of the prices you pay for buying early, granted there can be incentives to going early as well, but that’s a subject for another time.

In short: don’t expect Microsoft to do something similar to the Nintendo Ambassador’s Program, which provided early adopters of 3DS an incentive after the hardware was given a price drop.

“As with many first generation products, the offerings can be expected to change and evolve over time. Kinect remains an integral part of our vision. Xbox One is better with Kinect, making games, TV and entertainment come alive with premium experiences, a Microsoft representative told Eurogamer.

Furthermore, one of the factors which came into when offering a Kinect-less Xbox One bundle was the publishers, according to chief marketing and strategy officer Yusuf Mehdi.

“As you can imagine, we have really strong relationships [with publishers and entertainment partners],” Mehdi told Forbes. “The two of us looked at the problem the same way. We love Kinect, we love the way it’s going and the possibilities. At the same time, we also wanted to have a broadened base of users.

“Some games are fully Kinect-based, and some are better when you use Kinect, but can also work fine without it. In each of those cases, this is still the right call.”

Mehdi said he expects Xbox One consumers who go for the lower price point will buy a Kinect later. Xbox One will now run you $399, and while a price for this fall’s standalone Kinect was not announced, if Microsoft puts a $149.99 price tag on it, like they did for the original model, it would make more sense for users who want to play games like Disney Fantasia: Music Evolved to pay $499 for the bundle.

Anyway, we’ll keep abreast of the situation for you, and if anymore news comes from the initial announcement, we’ll let you know.

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