When Microsoft first announced and then rolled out pre-orders for its Windows Mixed Reality headsets, computer hardware manufacturer HP’s device was one of the first to be mentioned. The consumer version has been out for several months now with today seeing a much more business focused approach to virtual reality (VR) than before. HP has announced a new Windows Mixed Reality Professional Edition head-mounted display (HMD), as well as a revamped Z4 Workstation.
The new headset will not only be aimed at enterprise users like developers but also other business uses such as location-based VR. The standard specifications of the HMD won’t change from that of the consumer version, so it’ll still feature 1440×1440 resolution per eye and a 90Hz refresh rate. There will be to main changes to the Professional Edition, the first are easily cleanable and removable face cushions, enabling the headset to be used hygienically between multiple users. HP says that the face cushions are resistant to cleaning solutions so they won’t degrade over time, specifically designed for long lasting repetitive use.
The second feature is the addition of a shorter cable to connect the headset to HP’s Z VR Backpack. Thus allowing the backpack and headset to be more ergonomic as there’s less wire hanging down behind a players head.
Currently the standard price for the consumer version of the HP Windows Mixed Reality headset retails for $399 USD on Microsoft Store – Amazon sells it for $269. The Professional Edition will retail from $449 – the original consumer HMD price – coming with the shorter cable, and three of the new face cushions plus all the usual items like the controllers.
HP has also been busy upgrading its performance workstation, the Z4. Aimed at those in the engineering, simulation, rendering and VR sectors, the new Z4 Workstation can be now configured with the Intel Core X processors available with up to 18 cores and up to two extreme graphics GPUs for performance and productivity.
“The revamped Z4 workstation, along with our latest HP Windows Mixed Reality Headset and new customer-friendly VR solutions and services, will transform the way products across industries are developed,” said Xavier Garcia, Vice President and general manager, Z Workstations, HP Inc in a statement. “Over the past year, HP has launched the world’s most powerful workstation, the most powerful detachable PC and the first-ever professional VR backpack. Today’s news reflects our focus on continuously raising the bar with a portfolio of workstations and VR capabilities that will enable amazing new experiences and define the future of computing.
The HP Z4 Workstation is available now, starting from $1,499. While the HP Windows Mixed Reality Professional Edition headset will be available in March 2018. For any further updates, keep reading VRFocus.