Home / Technology / Microsoft's $ 399 Azure Kinect AI Camera Now Available in US and China – TechCrunch

Microsoft's $ 399 Azure Kinect AI Camera Now Available in US and China – TechCrunch

Earlier this year, at MWC, Microsoft announced the return of its Kinect sensor in the form of an AI development kit. The $ 399 Azure Kinect DK camera system includes a 1MP depth camera, a 360 degree microphone, a 12MP RGB camera, and an orientation sensor, all in a relatively small package. The kit has been available for pre-order for a few months now, but as the company announced today, it is now available and shipped to pre-order customers in the United States and China.

Unlike the original Kinect, which has become an Xbox gaming accessory that has never really attracted attention, the Azure Kinect is a bargain. It is intended to provide developers with a platform to experiment with artificial intelligence tools and connect to Azure's machine learning services ecosystem (although Azure use is not mandatory).

To help developers get started, the company has already launched a number of SDKs, including a preview of a body tracking SDK that approximates what you may remember from the time of the Kinect Kinbox.

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The heart of the device has more to do with Microsoft HoloLens than with the original Kinect. As the company notes in its press release, the Azure Kinect DK uses the same time-of-flight sensor that the company has developed for the second generation of its AR HoloLens visor. And while the focus is clearly on using the camera, Microsoft also notes that the microphone array also allows developers to create sophisticated voice solutions.

The company positions the device as an easy gateway for its users in the fields of health and life sciences, retail, logistics and robotics, in order to begin experimenting with technology. use of depth detection and automatic learning. We've seen slightly similar development kits from other partners, including Microsoft partner Qualcomm, though these devices do not usually have the depth camera that makes Kinect DK a Kinect.

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