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Microsoft To End Production Of Azure Kinect Developer Kit

Similar hardware will still be available from third-party manufacturers

Windows company Microsoft is discontinuing the Kinect once more. After initially halting manufacturing of the depth camera and microphone in 2017, the company reintroduced it in a different version as the Azure Kinect Developer Kit in 2019. 

And now, Microsoft is ceasing production of that as well. However, they’ve teamed up with external companies to offer alternative choices for those who require similar devices.

Swati Mehta of Microsoft wrote in a blog post, “As the needs of our customers and partners evolve, we regularly update our products to best support them. From time to time, this includes introducing new opportunities, as well as retiring products.

“We have made the decision to end production of Azure Kinect Developer Kit, but this is far from the end of this technology as it will continue to be available through our partner ecosystem.”

Keeping the tech alive 

Individuals interested in getting one of the last Azure Kinect Developer Kits can still purchase them until the end of October or, “Until supplies last,” said Mehta. Users who already own one can continue using it, “Without disruption.” 

Microsoft’s depth-sensing technology, called ‘indirect time-of-flight’ or iToF, first came out with HoloLens 2. They also shared the same depth camera with developers in the Azure Kinect Developer Kit.

The initial Kinect came out alongside the Xbox 360. There were plans to make a newer version mandatory for the Xbox One, but Microsoft changed this policy before the console was launched.

“If you are looking for a long-term solution or need to customise the hardware for your specific needs, we encourage you to explore the offerings from our partners,” said Mehta.

Written By

Isa Muhammad is a writer and video game journalist covering many aspects of entertainment media including the film industry. He's steadily writing his way to the sharp end of journalism and enjoys staying informed. If he's not reading, playing video games or catching up on his favourite TV series, then he's probably writing about them.

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