Awesome Contest Announcment–Kinect for Schools

Teachers, this one is for you.

Microsoft has announced the Kinect for Schools contest. They are giving away four (4) Xbox 360 + Kinect packages between now and May 14th, 2012.

What’s included:

  • One (1) Xbox 360 Kinect 250GB Bundle. Approximate Retail Value (ARV) $399.00.
  • Two (2) Kinect Video Games. Approximate Retail Value (ARV) $99.98.
    • Games will be selected from the following titles: Dance Central, Body & Brain, or Sesame Street.

Drawing schedule:

January 23 to February 14
Winner selected on February 15th, noon Pacific Time 
February 15 to March 14
Winner selected on March 15th, noon Pacific Time 
March 15 to April 14
Winner selected on April 15th, noon Pacific Time
April 15 to May 14
Winner selected on May 15th, noon Pacific Time

If you’re a teacher and you want an Xbox 360 for your classroom this a great opportunity to enter and win.

To enter go to

For official contest rules –

Kinect: First Impressions

Allow me to start by saying wow. Kinect is awesome. I’ve played Kinect here and there over the last few months, but never really got to experience it as I have today.

I went to my local Microsoft Store and bought the Kinect Sensor and a second game, Dance Central. The Kinect comes with one game, Kinect Adventures.

Setup was a breeze. Because I have the older Xbox 360, Kinect requires the power adapter (included with the sensor). Plug the sensor into power and then into a USB port, turn the Console on and you’re ready to go. Note that Kinect does require the new Xbox Dashboard update that became available earlier this week. If you don’t have the update, sign into Xbox Live, and you’ll be prompted to update.

Once the Kinect Sensor is recognized, it walked me through a quick setup and calibration process, and once complete, I put in a game and was playing in no time.

There are common gestures such as waving to tell your console that you are there, holding your left hand out to pause a game and / or open the Kinect Guide, and each game has its own set of gestures for controlling the in-game menus and gameplay.

Other features like Kinect Hub and Video Kinect are very cool. With the Kinect Hub, I was able to control my Xbox 360 with my body and start a game, change settings, go to ESPN3, and with Video Kinect, I was able to use Windows Live Messenger to have a video chat.

Kinect gave me a good workout too. I didn’t measure my heart rate when I was resting, but in the middle of my game play I decided to throw on a heart rate monitor, and I definitely hit my target heart rate for exercise.

Kinect is without a doubt, the next big thing in gaming. In my opinion, buying the Kinect was the best purchase I’ve made in a long time. I’ve included some unboxing pictures below.