Microsoft has announced that the Kinect for Windows v2 has been discontinued. The company is working to transition developers to the Kinect for Xbox One, creating a universal solution.
Microsoft says it has had trouble keeping up with demand for the standalone sensors in some markets. However, the Xbox One version is readily available.
In order to use one of the console sensors with a Windows 8 or 8.1 PC, you’ll need a $ 49.99 adapter. The two cameras are functionally identical, so if you’ve been having a hard time finding one for PC, this is your way in.
The Kinect for Windows v2 sensor went on sale in July 2014. Developers have been using the technology for a variety of practical applications, including health and music. You can see a number of projects on the Kinect for Windows Blog.
Unifying the products makes far more sense than two distinct sensors. Kinect might be a bust as far as gaming is concerned (unless we’re talking about Harmonix), but the broader applications seem to have promise.