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Microsoft may free up processing power currently reserved for Kinect to help boost the performance of Xbox One, according to a new report published by Polygon.

Polygon's report states that Microsoft is "reexamining the Xbox One's hardware architecture" following its decision to unbundle Kinect from Xbox One, hinting at the possibility of resources currently reserved for Kinect being shifted elsewhere to help boost game performance.

Speaking to the site about the move, Xbox's Yusuf Mehdi confirmed that the platform holder is "in discussions with our game publishers about what we might do in this space and we will have more to talk about soon".

A Digital Foundry report posted last October revealed that Xbox One "reserves 10 per cent of graphics resources for Kinect and apps functionality". The site added that Microsoft intended to "open up this additional GPU power for game development in the future".

Freeing up those resources in games that don't actively use Kinect could help Xbox One move away from the struggles it's faced with performance, which has seen numerous multiplatform titles – including this month's Watch Dogs – render at a lower resolution on Xbox One than PS4.

The change may impact titles already announced for the console, too. Speaking to Game Informer earlier this month about the advantages of developing on Xbox One, Insomniac CEO Ted Price teased that "there are other aspects of it that I can't get into right now, but we can talk about them at a later date that would be beneficial for us as a developer".

The Kinect-less Xbox One launches on June 9.


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JonnyViper's Avatar


So Microsoft insist that Kinect is still a major part of their plans, and they expect people who buy the Kinect-less console to pick one up at a later date, but now they are saying that the Xbox One could actually be a more powerful gaming machine without it? That just seems like the perfect way to stop people getting a Kinect at all!
Posted 13:58 on 14 May 2014
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