It was just a week ago that Microsoft announced the Kinect Accelerator program eying the developers and the startups who are using the Kinect technology to build their own innovative apps.
According to the Kinect Accelerator program top 1o finalists will get benefits like 20,000 USD investment by microsoft along with the Xbox and Windows Development Kits ,all other required resources and office space required will be provided along with the technical training from Microsoft,Winrumors Report.
What are the requirements to be qualified for the Kinect Accelerator program:
- Any Kinect-enabled application on Windows or Xbox that can be a commercial business
- Manufacturing to retail, education to healthcare, art installations to gaming, social to interactive play…hmmm, the possibilities
- Can be cloud-hosted, on any platform, but needs to be an application
- Could be one view of an application that may also have a web UI, mobile UI, etc
- Kinect-controlled applications, like what you have on your phone, but on a big screen or a computer screen
- Content you might expect to consume in your living room or in an operating room
Most importantly your startup/business need to leverage the kinect features and capabilities in your final product and company should be willing to develop interests in technical skills which are needed to build a functional prototype.
To apply for the Kinect Accelerator Program Click Here
Prior to this week’s Kinect Windows Beta 2 version, Microsoft released the first beta version of the Windows SDK for its Kinect motion controller camera which was a big hit for researchers and for people who just wanted to tweak Kinect for fun. This week, Microsoft announced that the second beta version of the Kinect Windows SDK has been released.
While this is still the non-commercial version, the Beta 2 version has a number of new features and improvements as opposed to the first Beta release this version has “faster skeletal tracking, better accuracy rate when it comes to skeletal tracking and joint recognition, and the ability to plug and unplug your Kinect without losing work/productivity” according to Microsoft.
Microsoft had previously disclosed that they are working on a commercial version of the Kinect Windows SDK which should be released sometime in 2012. It is expected to be a big hit for software developers and enthusiasts who will most likely create a number of interesting Kinect applications, and of course games, that will run on Windows PCs. It is likely to be of greater interest for the developers, who will be able to make some money off their Kinect apps, although so far Microsoft has yet to announce the terms of the licensing agreements.
This new Kinect for Windows SDK Beta 2 adds support for the Microsoft Windows 8 Developer.You can download the new version of the SDK here
Kinect first started making waves when the rumors started pouring out about Microsoft’s new motion sensing project. Then it broke all records and went on to sell over 8 million units in its first 60 days of release. Now the Kinect is found not only in gaming but also in stores, healthcare facilities, schools, colleges and in the laboratories. Kinect completed one full year in the market this week. To commemorate this event, Microsoft announced the commercial SDK release for Kinect.
After the initial launch, the Kinect saw a lot of enthusiasts indulging hacking the motion sensing device to do things other than play games. Soon, a lot of virtual reality installations, interactive displays and other experimental setups began to flood the Internet. In a positive response to the hackers who took Kinect beyond its initial gaming purpose, Microsoft released the Kinect educational and non-commercial Software Development Kit (SDK) for enthusiasts and researchers. This allowed them to take advantage of the full range of Kinect capabilities. This has resulted in a lot more experimental stuff and many have noted Kinect’s potential in the commercial market because many of these non-commercial setups would do very well if produced commercially.
Paying heed to these suggestions, Microsoft seems to have been working on commercial tie ups for the Kinect for quite some time now. So now that the 3D motion sensor has completed on year, Microsoft deems the time right to announce the commercial SDK for the Kinect. This SDK will be released next year and it will allows companies to build commercial products around the Kinect that can be sold legally with the proper licensing for Microsoft.
This SDK will essentially allow commercial developers to work software that takes advantage of Kinet’s powerful 3D motion sensing, face, voice recognition system and the RGB camera that recognizes colors. Using these capabilities, they can create more innovative UI, better virtual experiences and a whole lot more. A lot of engineers and medical personnel are looking in to the Kinect in order to incorporate it in to their workflow. Kinect’s main advantage over any other form of input device such as a wand or a controller is that it requires no physical touch from the user. This makes it useful for situations where a physical interface cannot be used. For example, Microsoft’s blog post on the subject talks about how surgeons needs to move out of a sterile surgery room in order to use a non-sterile computer that contains the patient’s information and then sterilize themselves again before re-entering the operation theatre.
The first year of Kinect’s existence in the market has seen it taking motion sensing to various places. Some of these places Microsoft themselves probably never thought about. From teaching young children the basics of math and language to enabling children with disabilities to play equally with their peers for the first time ever — Kinect has also done wonders for youngest members of its audience.
Kinect’s popularity seems to be growing exponentially. Microsoft claimed that over 200 businesses have joined the global pilot program to turn Kinect’s abilities in to commercial products. More impressively, 25 out of the 200 are fortune 500 companies. Amongst the companies named in the post were biggies like Toyota and Razorfish (one of the largest marketing and consultant agencies in the world).