Xbox GPU faster without kinect

June 6, 2014

xbox one

Phil Spencer from Microsoft posted on twitter today:

June #XboxOne software dev kit gives devs access to more GPU bandwidth. More performance, new tools and flexibility to make games better

But what does this mean? Eurogamer questined Microsoft:

Microsoft has confirmed that this boost in performance is in fact due to Kinect being stripped from the package. When asked if the two were related, a Microsoft spokesperson sent Eurogamer the following response:

“Yes, the additional resources allow access to up to 10 per cent additional GPU performance. We’re committed to giving developers new tools and flexibility to make their Xbox One games even better by giving them the option to use the GPU reserve in whatever way is best for them and their games.”

And will this mean more games will hit the 1080p 60fps benchmark that’s all the rage these days, I asked?

“Xbox One games look beautiful and have rich gameplay and platform features. How developers choose to access the extra GPU performance for their games will be up to them. We have started working with a number of developers on how they can best take advantage of these changes. We will have more to share in the future.”

Microsoft also offered the following statement on the dev kit update in general:

“Just as we’re committed to making ongoing system updates for our fans to enjoy new features of Xbox One, we’re also committed to giving developers new tools and flexibility to make their Xbox One games even better. In June we’re releasing a new SDK making it possible for developers to access additional GPU resources previously reserved for Kinect and system functions. The team is continually calibrating the system to determine how we can give developers more capabilities. With this SDK, we will include new options for how developers can use the system reserve as well as more flexibility in our natural user interface reserve (voice and gesture). We’ll continue to work closely with developers to help them bring great games to Xbox One.”

So unplugging the kinect won’t speed up a game, and free up GPU resources. The changes have top be made by the devs themselves.

Will this mean better game graphics on the XBONE?
I think so, publishers wanna shift more titles, and gain market share. If a game isn’t kinect compatible then you would hope any programmers worth their salt will try and get the most out of the target hardware… only time will tell.

This now makes the choice of purchasing a next gen console more of a challenge!

The PS4 has been regarded as the better, more advanced piece of kit… until now.

But the xbox controller is so much more ergonomic for my bear sized hands, and I’ve been a fan of the kinect from launch… but is there a Virtual Headset coming soon from Sony?

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