Earlier today technology innovator Microsoft Corporation finally confirmed what everyone is waiting: the motion-sensing controller Kinect will cost $150 with a free game. The gaming system that was scheduled to be release in the market in November will also be available in a $300 package that includes an Xbox 360 “Slim” and a Kinect Adventures game.
Meanwhile, the folks at EEDAR reacted to the news and called it an “appropriate price” for the camera peripheral.
“By examining peripheral pricing over the last five years, EEDAR feels that $150 is an appropriate price for the Kinect. Previous peripherals with mass-market appeal, such as band kits, have sold millions of units worldwide even while priced north of $150,” commented analyst Jesse Divnich. “With band kits, however, consumers were tethered to only enjoying games within the music genre and developers restricted on future iterations by the install base of non-upgradeable band kits” explained Divnich.
Divnich continued and said: “As a camera and motion sensor based device, the Kinect does not have those same limitations; developers will be able to optimize its software for years to come. [So], Kinect should not be viewed as a software peripheral, as most peripherals are, but rather a hardware peripheral.”
According to Divnich, game specific peripherals have a “limited” shelf-life in terms of appeal. “[You know], there are only so many sessions of Guitar Hero one can enjoy before game fatigue sets in. With the Kinect, however, there is the possibility of a wide array of games across a broad range of genres, potentially giving the Kinect a much longer shelf-life than a typical peripheral.
“[As such], the Kinect should not be viewed as a typical video game peripheral that is retired from one’s active playlist after 90 days, but rather a consumer enabling device that has the potential to revolutionize the way we interact with all forms of media on a daily basis.”
He added that Microsoft’s introduction of a new Arcade SKU with 4GB of internal memory was a huge step forward. “EEDAR always felt the Xbox 360 Arcade SKU, which didn’t come with a hard-drive, to be counter-productive to Microsoft’s goal of delivering both physical and digital entertainment to the masses. Now with the new Xbox 360 4GB SKU, even price sensitive consumers can still enjoy Xbox Live’s Library of hundreds of digital games,” he said.
With the new 4GB SKU and Kinect, Microsoft may have a chance of capturing more of the casual crowd this holiday. “Overall, EEDAR is very positive on the Kinect. The Kinect’s success this holiday season is crucial to rekindling the energy among the casual and mainstream audience, the same audience that has exacerbated software revenue declines since 2009,” quoted Divnich.