Thoughts on Kinect

Over the weekend I bought a Kinect for Xbox 360 at Best Buy.  I checked several places online which were sold out, went to GameStop (sold out), and finally found a dozen or so at Best Buy.  As far as the price for the controller goes, I think it’s worth it.  This is some impressive technology.

Setup was easy enough.  Ran the Kinect ID for each of the profiles so they’d be recognized automatically.  Though we only have one game for now, the bundled Kinect Adventures, the family has spent a bunch of time playing it.  Even my 3 year old is getting the hang of it.  It seems like it may get repetitive after a while, but for now it’s quite entertaining.

Controlling the “cursor” is simple enough, as is selecting items on screen.  Some reviews complained that it takes too long to select anything, but I haven’t been bugged by it.  One annoyance I ran across was with the search function in the Zune app.  Selecting individual letters and dragging them up was a real pain in the neck.  I really feel that UI needs work.  Another is with the avatar setup, which is done MUCH easier and quicker with a controller.  Dragging across pages of clothing or other items was a pain.

The voice controls are great, and I hope additional functions are added over time.  As far as apps on the Kinect hub, I hope we get the following: Video Library (for streaming from home PCs, not Zune), Facebook, and a “Paint” app.  I wonder if Kinect will be extended to work with the Media Center Extender functionality, which would be incredible.

Overall, it’s great!  More games are on the way, and I can’t help feeling this is the tip of the iceberg for this tech.

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