Looks like our plentiful tipsters were right earlier this month when they told us that Microsoft was offering a "limited audience" of Xbox 360 owners an opportunity to beta test Kinect.
New tipsters now tell us that those who were accepted into the beta program were contacted today and will soon be basking in motion controlled gaming, a new dashboard and fancy, slimmer avatars.
Microsoft tells these lucky few that their consoles should be prompted for a system update within the next 24 hours and that Kinect hardware is being packed and will be shipped to them soon.
Of course the welcome email also told those lucky beta testers to remain mum on the whole thing... but that's crazy talk.
Here's the full acceptance email, complete with dire warnings and arbitrary use of bold:
Congratulations! We're pleased to report you've been accepted in the Xbox LIVE and Kinect beta program. We look forward to your active involvement and feedback along the way.
REMINDER:The Xbox LIVE and Kinect beta program is confidential. Please don't disclose, share, or discuss beta program materials, except as allowed in the Xbox LIVE and Kinect Beta Program Agreement. Specifically, please:
DO NOT Blog about the beta materials.
DO NOT Post pictures, screenshots, or video clips of the beta materials.
DO NOT Discuss the beta materials in discussion forums, emails, or podcasts.
DO NOT Talk with the media or press about the beta materials. This includes bloggers, newspaper reporters, and television reporters.
Only use approved support methods for your Kinect experience which are listed on https://connect.microsoft.com/XboxLIVEupdate.
DO NOT contact Xbox Support over Twitter. For support options, please go to https://connect.microsoft.com/XboxLIVEupdate
DO NOT post in the public Xbox support forums (only use the private Kinect Beta forums)
The Xbox LIVE and Kinect Beta information has been updated on the Microsoft Connect website (https://connect.microsoft.com/XboxLIVEupdate). Your console should be prompted for a system update within the next 24 hours. Kinect hardware is being packed and will be shipped to the address you provided when applying for this program. Please be patient and review the Microsoft Connect website for any status updates.
For any troubleshooting or program questions, please review the support information at https://connect.microsoft.com/XboxLIVEupdate
Congratulations, we look forward to your participation!
Xbox LIVE Beta Team
Thanks tipster, also a big thanks to the tipster who sent us a look at the Kinect boot-up screen.
But wait, there's more. Check out these pics we've been sent of the new avatar and dash.