For years, the Xbox Kinect was one of the main features that differentiated the Xbox from other gaming consoles. It also found a fair bit of use outside of gaming, where its scanning capabilities allowed it to be used in other industries besides gaming, such as the medical industry, for example.

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However it seems that despite its potential, it never really quite caught on with consumers, leading to Microsoft officially announcing back in 2017 that they would be ceasing the manufacturing of the device. However fast forward a couple of years later, Microsoft has decided to bring the Kinect back.

Dubbed the Azure Kinect Developer Kit, it seems that Microsoft is targeting a very different audience for it where it appears to be aimed more towards the enterprise sector. According to Microsoft, the new Kinect will feature a time-of-flight depth sensor, high-def RGB camera, and a 7-microphone circular array. The company cites how these features makes it useful particularly in the healthcare industry.

According to Microsoft, “It enables solutions that don’t just sense but understand the world — people, places, things around it. A good example of such a solution in the healthcare space is Ocuvera, which is using this technology to prevent patients from falling in hospitals. Every year in the U.S. alone, over 1 million hospital patients fall each year, and 11,000 of those falls are fatal. With Azure Kinect, the environmental precursors to a fall can be determined and a nurse notified to get to patients before they fall.”

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