Steve Ballmer may have given us a vague “holiday 2010” launch date for Microsoft’s motion-sensing Project Natal at CES 2010, but it looks like things have just gotten a little more specific courtesy of British TV host Jonathan Ross. The man who accidentally announced Fable III this time last year pulled another smooth move last night when he slipped on Twitter and revealed an October launch date for Project Natal.
“OK. Before bed. Natal on X Box impressive. Not quite there yet i think but tye have til october and if they get it right…skys the limit,” Ross tweeted after a hands-on demo from Microsoft. His son also posted a YouTube video of his dad’s less-than-graceful attempt to smack virtual balls out of the sky.
Apparently, Ross wasn’t the only journalist to get a recent Natal demo, and the others managed to glean some previously unknown tidbits as well. MTV’s Russ Frushtick brought along a stopwatch to his demo in New York, and walked away with hard numbers on the lag time that some gamers have noticed. According to Frushtick, the delay between real-life motion and on-screen motion clocked in somewhere between 0.8 seconds and 0.12 seconds – numbers that previous demo videos appear to confirm. While Frushtick doesn’t claim the delay will be game over for Microsoft, it could be one of the biggest challenges for the company’s otherwise very impressive new technology.