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Microsoft's mission to put Kinect in laptops and tablets

"It's not gonna happen tomorrow..."

Microsoft wants to put its motion sensor Kinect in laptops and tablets, but it faces a touch technical challenge to make its wish a reality.

Craig Mundie, senior advisor to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, told The Verge it was his "dream" to shrink Kinect in both size and price so it can be inserted into mobile devices such as Microsoft's tablet, Surface.

"It's not gonna happen tomorrow," he said, "but we can see a path towards that sort of thing."

Microsoft's research into this area has encountered a number of problems, including getting Kinect to work outside.

"It turns out it's infrared so when you go out in the sunlight the sun is a big infrared source that drowns it out," Mundie explained.

"There's a whole bunch of problems, not just miniaturization, in designing the sensors so they actually do what you expect them to do in all of the environments."

Microsoft is expected to include the next generation of its Kinect camera, dubbed Kinect 2, with its next Xbox.

During a trip to Microsoft's TechForum this week, The Verge caught a glimpse of what looked like a redesigned Kinect sensor, something it described as "thinner and smaller than existing ones", but a spokesperson refused to confirm or deny it was Kinect 2.

Cover image for YouTube videoTeaching Kinect for Windows to Read Your Hands