Microsoft has said it has significantly upgraded Kinect, which is a requirement for its next console, the Xbox One.
The device was detailed by Marc Whitten, Microsoft's corporate vice president of Xbox Live, who took the stage at the Xbox One reveal event to talk up the console's new operating system and its "seamless" integration of Kinect.
"This is rocket science stuff," he claimed. According to Whitten, the new Kinect has been redesigned to respond to users. It is more "conversational" than the original, and together with camera and Skype support, will deliver shared communication experiences in the living room.
It "understands the slightest rotation of wrist, shift balance, transfer of motion, and when you're exercising it can read your heartbeat", he said.
Microsoft said in a release: "The completely redesigned, revolutionary 1080p Kinect is more precise, more responsive and more intuitive.
"Its unparalleled vision, motion and voice technology let you reach into games and entertainment like never before by dramatically expanding its field of view and fidelity. It works in nearly any lighting condition, recognizes precise motion control from a slight wrist rotation, and distinguishes your voice even in a noisy room using advanced noise isolation."
"The all new Kinect is now an essential and integrated part of the platform," reads an official Q&A on the Microsoft news site.
"By having it as a consistent part of every Xbox One, game and entertainment creators can build experiences that assume the availability of voice, gesture and natural sensing, leading to unrivaled ease of use, premium experiences and interactivity for you."
Microsoft has confirmed the Xbox One release date as "later this year".