Microsoft has ended production and sales of its Kinect for Windows v2 hardware sensor. Software developers can still make Kinect-based Windows apps by using the version made for the Xbox One console in combination with the Kinect Adapter for Windows that launched in October.
Microsoft had previously announced it would end sales of the first Kinect for Windows sensor in 2015, but today's reveal that it would also stop producing the second generation version of the hardware that launched in the summer of 2014 is more of a surprise. The company explained their decision in a blog post:
Over the past several months, we have seen unprecedented demand from the developer community for Kinect sensors and have experienced difficulty keeping up with requests in some markets. At the same time, we have seen the developer community respond positively to being able to use the Kinect for Xbox One sensor for Kinect for Windows app development, and we are happy to report that Kinect for Xbox One sensors and Kinect Adapter for Windows units are now readily available in most markets.
Microsoft added that the sensors in Kinect for Windows v2 and for the Xbox One are "functionally identical" and that the Kinect for Windows SDK 2.0 tools work with both. Microsoft will continue to offer support to developers who already have the Kinect for Windows v2 hardware.