In an interview with Microsoft’s Marc Whitten, it was revealed that the Xbox One will work without the Kinect being plugged in. Turns out Microsoft was listening to the avalanche of feedback they received post-E3.
“That said, like online, the console will still function if Kinect isn’t plugged in, although you won’t be able to use any feature or experience that explicitly uses the sensor,” Whitten said to IGN.
Of course, not having the Kinect connected will result in losing out of some of the Xbox One’s functionally such as voice commands and anything involving the camera obviously. Any game that requires the use of Kinect will promptly ask you to turn it back on.
It’s interesting to see a company addressing a potential customer service nightmare. There was already an uneasy feeling about a camera you couldn’t turn off in your bedroom. I’m certain that Microsoft was not going to spy on you through your Kinect and send pictures of you in your underwear to the NSA.
The big question is of course, if the Xbox One can work without Kinect, what are the odds of seeing a Kinect-less version of the Xbox One available for retail? Marc Whitten stated that all Xbox One’s will come with a Kinect bundled in but with all these policy reversals lately, who knows.