Kinect has a language problem

Microsoft’s Kinect interface might have a bit of a problem with a worldwide roll out because it can only be controlled by the voices of Americans,  English, Japanese and Mexicans.

Eurogamer  has confirmed with Microsoft that when Kinect is released in November, no languages from mainland Europe will be supported. This means that Kinect will only speak American, English and er Mexican.

Even if you live in the rest of the world and speak fluent English, it still won’t work, as your Kinect will be locked to the same region as your Xbox 360. So our cunning plan to actually buy the first games machine since our Atari when Kinect comes out is well and truly screwed.

At least the problem will be noted by Canadians, Aussies and Kiwis who also also not be able to use it. Despite the fact that they speak something close to English, they will have to wait until an update next year.

In short, it is looking like Microsoft has managed to cock everything up again having a potentially brilliant product but stuffing it up because it did not think things through properly.

In this case we doubt if it is the language recognition software that is the problem. After all a Canadian is easier to understand than someone from Glasgow, but Microsoft’s regional controls assume you only speak the language of the country you are in rather than letting you chose.

This regionalisation is also the blight of any ex-pats who try to use Bing or Google because the default settings are always the country you are in, rather than the language you speak.

It has not been widely reported that the Kinect’s voice controls will be switched off in Europe for six months, but it could actually kill off any advantage Redmond had over the PS3.