In addition to bringing Netflix and streaming apps out from the Xbox Live paywall, Microsoft will also be offering a new Xbox One bundle that does not include the Kinect, for just $499 starting June 9.
From its announcement to its release, the Xbox One changed a lot; Microsoft walked back a lot of its future-looking but kind-of-scary plans for the digital future of games. It sucked. But the one place Microsoft remained steadfast was including Kinect in the box. No more.
Even though Microsoft long ago conceded that the Kinect did not have to be attached, it kept pushing out, at least ensuring that every home with an Xbox One also had a Kinect, even if it was in a closet somewhere. Now that won’t be the case, which makes the future of Xbox and the Kinect look worse for everyone, but at least ensures that Microsoft will have an easier time going toe-to-toe with the $549 PS4.
Stand-alone Kinects will be available for purchase in late 2014 for folks who opt for the new Kinect-less package, but there’s no word on price.