Microsoft's 1.5 release of Kinect for Windows will be available at the end of May in more countries, supporting more languages with Microsoft's speech engine, and continuing to evolve the device's human tracking capabilities.
Availability in Hong Kong, South Korea, and Taiwan is expected in late May. In June, Kinect for Windows will be available in Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Denmark, Finland, India, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Arab Emirates.
Among the most exciting new capabilities of Kinect 1.5 release is Kinect Studio, an application that will allow developers to record, playback and debug clips of users engaging with their applications. Also coming is what Microsoft calls "seated" or "10-joint" skeletal tracking, which provides the capability to track the head, neck and arms of either a seated or standing user. What is extra exciting about this functionality is that it will work in both default and near mode, Microsoft said.
Also included in the 1.5 release will be four new languages for speech recognition - French, Spanish, Italian, and Japanese. In addition, Microsoft will be releasing new language packs which enable speech recognition for the way a language is spoken in different regions: English/Great Britain, English/Ireland, English/Australia, English/New Zealand, English/Canada, French/France, French/Canada, Italian/Italy, Japanese/Japan, Spanish/Spain and Spanish/Mexico.