Microsoft announced during the Game Developer’s Conference in San Francisco a few vital steps in its bid to mix the real world with the virtual. The company confirmed mixed reality experiences will arrive on the Xbox in 2018, including the next-gen Project Scorpio.
For those wondering about what “mixed reality” is, it’s the merging of real and virtual worlds to produce new environments and visualizations where physical and digital objects co-exist and interact in real time. This means that we have no idea whether future Xbox experiences are coming in the form of a HoloLens type transparent headset, or a VR experience like Oculus.
Odds are we might get a little bit of both. VR experiences have already established themselves in the gaming world thanks to the likes of Rift, Vive, and Playstation VR, but the augmented side is also with its own perks as proven by the popularity of Pokemon Go.
In other news regarding mixed reality news, Microsoft is releasing a new devkit for immersive experiences called the ‘Acer Windows Mixed Reality Development Edition headset’. As you can probably make out by the name, it was built alongside Acer. It’s a full fledged headset with specs that are head to head with the best of the best:
- Two LCDs at 1440 x 1440 each
- 90 Hz refresh rate
- Audio and microphone support through 3.5mm jack
- Single cable with HDMI 2.0 (display) and USB 3.0 (data)
The objective is apparently to allow developers a high-fidelity option to use while creating their MR experiences, without having to hack a Vive or Rift. It also benefits from inside out-tracking unlike its competition, which means it doesn’t have to depend on separate external cameras to figure out where you are in a room. It should also be able to replicate your living space fairly accurately as well, if HoloLens is any indication.
We’ll find out more during Microsoft’s Build conference in May, until then stay tuned for more updates.