Well here’s some news I wasn’t expecting. Today, Phil Spencer posted a blog on the Xbox website to announce that an Xbox One bundle with the Kinect removed will be sold for 399$ starting June 9th. Microsoft isn’t abandoning the Kinect entirely, however.
“To be clear, as we introduce this new Xbox One console option, Kinect remains an important part of our vision. Many of you are using Kinect for Xbox One every day. In fact, more than 80 percent of you are actively using Kinect, with an average of 120 voice commands per month on each console. “
Mr. Spencer continues, announcing an expansion to Games with Gold to Xbox One, so if you have a Gold account, you can now get free games on One. This June’s Xbox 360 Gold games are Dark Souls, Charlie Murder, and Super Street Fighter 4: Arcade Edition, while the Xbox One games are Halo: Spartan Assault and Max: The Curse of Brotherhood.
The final update is freeing Netflix, Hulu, Skype, and other apps from the Gold paywall. Catching up with Sony seems to be a priority here, especially since Xbox One hails itself as an all-in-one entertainment center more than a game console.
If you want to order a Kinect-less Xbox One now, Amazon is already taking pre-orders.