Windows 10 VR Headset – What and When to expect?

  • With Virtual Reality becoming a major topic in the entertainment world, companies are trying to get their hands on their own VR headsets; trying to manufacture and sell them and tap into the massive potential of this new platform.

    There have been a lot of virtual reality headsets which are in the works, from Lenovo’s VR headset to Star VR’s enthusiast grade HMD, we are seeing both massive improvement in the manufacturing process and technologies used in the headsets as well as a great reduction in price.

    The Upcoming Microsoft Windows 10 VR headset is between the lower and higher end headsets, with a meagre cost, the product is focused more towards the consumers for general use and entertainment and intended to use with light gaming.

    We know that Microsoft VR headset will be an overhaul of HoloLens idea Microsoft had a while back, but completely based on virtual reality and not Augmented reality or AR> This means that as Microsoft’s VR headset will be a great success for its price alone, there will also be a lot more to it than just entertainment such as its use in education, teaching for impaired and so on.

    Microsoft Windows 10 VR headset:

    Overview

    The upcoming Microsoft Windows 10 VR headset is not at all a massive, high end gaming-mostly device, its use is intended to be more than that. Like, using apps, watching movies and more. It was announced back in February this year and is based on the Windows HoloLens platform, which is pre-established in Windows 10.

    These devices are tethered, meaning that they are just like any other current day VR headsets but, they don’t require any external sensors.

    The PC system requirements have been substantially lowered, according to Microsoft spokesperson, “We’ve lowered the specs you need for a [VR-ready] PC from a $1,500 system to a $500 one” As well as the price of Windows 10 VR headset is also quite cheap.

    Windows 10 VR Specifications

    While no official specifications of Windows 10 VR headset have been revealed, considering the PC hardware requirements are substantially less than full blown VR headsets, we can assume the display will be of lesser resolution than the two 1440p screens of either the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive but have the sweet spot refresh rate of 90Hz, to reduce motion sickness.

    There is also the fact that the device doesn’t use any external cameras, not only reducing the cost by a margin but also removing the need to be in a specific zone to be registered by the device. Although the device is tethered, it’s still a bump up in maneuverability.

    The PC hardware requirements for Windows 10 VR headset:
    • 4GB RAM
    • A DirectX 12 compatible GPU
    • A 4-core CPU (including dual-core processors with hyper threading)
    • A USB 3.0 port
    While these specifications are very general, Microsoft did say that the hardware requirements have been reduce as aforementioned.

    Software

    Microsoft teased the idea of HoloLens a while back, even though that is still in the works; but the existing software infrastructure is actually imbedded and being implemented into Windows 10.

    Microsoft VR headset uses the preexisting HoloLens platform as their software base, allowing them to incorporate other similar VR/AR devices into the same platform.

    Windows 10 VR Headset Release date:

    There has been no official discussion or reveal by Microsoft of when Microsoft VR headset will be released but it is assembly around spring, this year or close to April or May, 2017.

    The release date isn’t that far away and hopefully shouldn’t move towards the final half of the year. This also means that the timing for release is actually pretty great, with a lot more devices coming around soon enough, Microsoft can be the early bird –as far as release dates go- and get the chunk of the market share.

    Pricing

    When it comes to Virtual Reality headsets, there is always a premium involved, and usually is high priced. Mainly because the technology right now is fairly new and the development is still being made more efficient.

    However, Windows 10 Virtual Reality headset is actually quite cheap, coming at an astounding $299.99, on par with the PlayStation 4 VR headset, but quite a bit cheaper. Since you don’t need external cameras and the move controllers either, but you will still have to have a compatible enough computer to actually use it.

    Conclusion

    Microsoft’s VR headset is actually designed to bring VR to the mainstream, and bringing it to the biggest platform –windows 10, that is- as an accessory is the perfect place to start. Bringing VR to the mainstream is the first step in development of the device, for not only games, but movies, apps and more.
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