Microsoft first announced the next generation Kinect sensor will be included with all Xbox One consoles back in May, and one thing that's really interesting about the device is that the processor inside was designed completely by Microsoft.
Bloomberg reports that the this is the first time that Microsoft has designed the processor for one of its hardware products in-house, without help from another chip maker. The original Kinect, which was sold as an add-on for the Xbox 360 in 2010, used processors designed by PrimeSense. Microsoft has a team in Silicon Valley that created the new Kinect's chip. The company created and assembled the chip but still has to give the mass manufacturing portion of the job over to a third party foundry in Taiwan
The story says that Microsoft now has 200 people working on microprocessor design and creation. Other hardware groups at Microsoft are learning about how the Kinect team made their own chips, according to Xbox hardware VP Todd Holmdahl, and we could see more Microsoft hardware products with their own custom processors in the future.
Indeed, Rob Sanfilippo, an analyst at the third party research firm Directions on Microsoft, claims that as Microsoft puts out more hardware products such as its Surface tablets, it "makes sense for them to invest more right down to the silicon so they can have proprietary features."
Source: Bloomberg | Image via Microsoft