Xbox One dev kit update promises better performance for the console [Update]

Phil Spencer, the head of the Xbox division, has tweeted about the June update for the Xbox One developer kit which aims at giving a performance boost among other things to game developers.

It was reported recently that the June update for the Xbox One and Xbox 360 consoles had started rolling out for gamers with plenty of new features. Now, developers will also be able to join in the fun with some much needed improvements.

In February, an Xbox One developer had revealed that Microsoft would work on making the development kit better with regular performance upgrades and features which would eventually enable more 1080p games to be launched on the next-gen console. With the latest update, it seems developers will have plenty of things to work with and make better optimized games.

Update: Speaking to Eurogamer, a Microsoft representative said the improved performance is a result of more resources being freed from the currently bundled Kinect sensor (Microsoft will release a version of Xbox One without the Kinect sensor on Monday, however). The Microsoft representative provided Eurogamer with the following statement when asked if the boost in performance was a result of Kinect no longer being mandatory:

Yes, the additional resources allow access to up to 10 per cent additional GPU performance. We're committed to giving developers new tools and flexibility to make their Xbox One games even better by giving them the option to use the GPU reserve in whatever way is best for them and their games.

Source: Twitter | Image via Microsoft

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(In the interest of not looking stupid, the Kinect image in the article originally had a red Hal-9000 style glow around the camera, which has since been edited out).

Any improvement is welcome. Though i really dont think most even have clue what resolution or frame rate or which version looks better unless a dev points it out or they read a article with a few screenshots and video examples with arrows and diagrams pointing it out to them.

These updates will be great once they roll out to retail machines but I think DX12 will make the biggest difference in performance with lower level access to hardware that will be comparable to what sony has on the playstation 4.

Hopefully developers will patch existing games to take advantage of the extra bandwidth. Would really like a stable frame rate with v-sync in titanfall for xbox one, even if it stays at ~720p.

TheBrockman said,
Hopefully developers will patch existing games to take advantage of the extra bandwidth. Would really like a stable frame rate with v-sync in titanfall for xbox one, even if it stays at ~720p.

vsync is a must!

duddit2 said,

vsync is a must!


They don't have it enabled on the Xbox one, not even an option for it. It's really a shame for being a Microsoft exclusive.

TheBrockman said,

They don't have it enabled on the Xbox one, not even an option for it. It's really a shame for being a Microsoft exclusive.

The tearing is awful

So if a retail unit can be turned into a dev unit does it need a kinect? Will gamers who remove their kinect have a better gaming experience? Way to remove the core part of the console, MS... I can already hear the cries about the 180 on always-connected internet you'll soon announce to complete the PR saga. Why did you even bother MS? If people wanted to play offline theres the 360, right??

I think its more like this:

Each title was allocated resources based on its requirements. Since each title "required" Kinect, that was sitting there, even it if was unused.

Now that is freed for titles that won't use Kinect and they can put that allocation to better use elsewhere.

So, what you may find is that games without Kinect integration perform slightly better or faster, but there will be no performance impact on those that do.

At least that's how I took it.

This is a quite interesting point. If Kinect needs 10% of system resources, and devs start utilizing that additional 10%, will people with Kinects attached see performance issues?

Majesticmerc said,
This is a quite interesting point. If Kinect needs 10% of system resources, and devs start utilizing that additional 10%, will people with Kinects attached see performance issues?

It's probably games that don't use kinect will make use of the extra power but games that do won't be able to.

Majesticmerc said,
This is a quite interesting point. If Kinect needs 10% of system resources, and devs start utilizing that additional 10%, will people with Kinects attached see performance issues?

I am thinking along the line that MS will use continue to use the cloud to offload some of the XBO processes, and this could include the Kinect if the game that is utilized the added 10% is being run. Once you pause the game, the process goes back to the system, thus allowing you instantaneous use of Kinect when you need it.

I think MS should reword what they said about this. Unless you really have to remove the device from console for it to run that added 10%.

Majesticmerc said,
This is a quite interesting point. If Kinect needs 10% of system resources, and devs start utilizing that additional 10%, will people with Kinects attached see performance issues?

What'll probably happen is that Kinect will get turned off, or at least become a useless brick when games using these extra resources are played. This worries me slightly, I still want to be able to use console voice commands from within the game to switch to other apps, etc.

TCLN Ryster said,

What'll probably happen is that Kinect will get turned off, or at least become a useless brick when games using these extra resources are played. This worries me slightly, I still want to be able to use console voice commands from within the game to switch to other apps, etc.

I'd imagine it'll go to sleep but still be ready to be woken up as and when it is needed. As far as i'm aware, it currently tracks constantly whilst you play games etc. I'm thinking they'll remove this and have it in a low power state waiting for it to here "Xbox" before switching to regular use.

Pinch of sale of course because i really don't have a clue :p

@majornelson: Dear Media: The GPU change was developer facing. Unplugging Kinect does not get you more HP. Devs have to code to the new specs.

I will honestly be very upset if this is the case. I personally love Kinect, and don't want it diminished in any way. I may be the only one in this boat, but I knew what I was getting into when I forked over $500.

Showan said,
I will honestly be very upset if this is the case. I personally love Kinect, and don't want it diminished in any way. I may be the only one in this boat, but I knew what I was getting into when I forked over $500.

No, totally agree. Many people weren;t in to it and those people should have bought a Playstation.

@majornelson: Dear Media: The GPU change was developer facing. Unplugging Kinect does not get you more HP. Devs have to code to the new specs.

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