At Microsoft’s keynote IFA 2017 in Berlin Germany, Microsoft showcased their serious interest in their mixed reality (MR). Microsoft is working together with partners Acer, HP, Lenovo, Dell and Asus to provide a range of MR Head-mounted displays (HMD’s) that all have Windows 10 and Cortana on them. All five of these MR HMD’s will be released on October 17th this Fall and the prices will start from $299, with some coming as bundles. For example Dell’s MR HMD’s known as the ‘Visor’ will be $349.99 USD with controllers set to be $99.99, but are now retailing for $449.99 as bundle package. Some of the headsets can be pre-ordered already but Visor is not one of them.
The controllers have an LED tracking system, a home button, front trigger, lower grip trigger and analog stick. The sensors on the headsets are able to track the controllers and therefore you do not need extra sensors or lighthouses in order to be tracked. It’s encouraging to see such a range available for various price ranges for mixed reality headsets all in one go. It allows consumers to choose what is best for them and at different price points.
What has to be noted is that these are not all-in-one headsets. You are still requirde to purchase a virtual reality (VR) ready PC or laptop, which Microsoft are prepared for. They have a “Windows Mixed Reality Ultra” line of computers that will run experiences at 90 frames per second (FPS), the optimal standard for VR as well as “Windows Mixed Reality”, which will run experiences at 60FPS, a minimum standard for FPS. Though not all the prices or specs have been revealed for all the headsets, it’s important to note that both high-end VR HMD’s; the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive have come down in price recently with the Oculus Rift with Touch controllers retail for $399 in their temporary summer sale and the HTC Vive dropping down in $200 in price to £599. As prices continue to drop for HMD’s, consumers are given more choice than ever when it comes to accessing VR experiences, it just becomes the price of the PC or laptop that comes with it.
VRFocus already previously discussed content available for the headsets, which will include future projects on Halo with 343 Industries. The MR HMD’s will have content accessible such as Space Pirate Trainer, Superhot Vr, Arizona Sunshine and Rec Room to name a few. With Steam VR supporting the headsets, MR HMD’s buyers should have access to all the VR titles in the Steam VR library. With JauntVR’s app and other applications 360 video content can also be enjoyed in the headset.
To find out more watch the video below.