Rumor: Microsoft improving Kinect’s accuracy

Kinect is making Microsoft a tidy sum of money for Christmas, there’s no doubt about that, but most would admit there’s room for improvement in the technology.

That can be improved via 360 firmware updates though. Eurogamer are reporting that Microsoft are looking to do just that. By upgrading Kinect’s depth sensor from a 320×240 resolution limit to a 640×480 one the device would be able to pick up fingers and hand rotation.

There are reasons this limit is in place, but it’s only an artificial limit so Microsoft can change it at will. Digital Foundry’s Rich Leadbetter thinks the process is easily doable if Microsoft “disable or lower throughput of game installs running from USB flash drives to free up additional bandwidth.”

“All eminently doable though bearing in mind that Kinect ‘only’ needs 20MB/s for full res from both cameras,” Leadbetter said. “The resolution coming out of the depth camera via PC is indeed 640×480, but it is uncertain just how accurate the camera’s sensor is.”

However, he concluded that “processing four times as many depth pixels could slow things down more.”

Maybe Kinectimals will be registering our own fingers as we scratch Skittles’ chin in the new year.