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Nyren's Corner: Microsoft is Apparently Getting in on the VR Market

Acer’s Windows 10 VR Headset and Controllers

VR is one of those things where it’s still trying to find its groove. Most of the game that come out for it feel more like experiments and big AAA games treat it more like an afterthought most of the time. If you’re playing on consoles, then you’re only way to experience VR is to own a PS4 and get a PSVR headset. If you’re on PC, you have to choose between the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift, the former of which is backed by Valve. There aren’t a ton of options, which sucks, though it does keep things simple. That being said, price can certainly be a limiting factor. But that’s going to change as, apparently, Microsoft has decided to jump in on the fun. I had no idea they were doing this though apparently they announced their stake in the VR market last year. And we’re talking about Microsoft proper, not Xbox, this is not the brain child of Xbox’s R&D department, so I’m even more surprised at that.

HP’s Windows 10 VR Headset

So not only are we getting two more full-fledged VR devices for PC, but both of them are supposedly better than both the Vive and Rift in two major departments: Resolution & Price. According to Kitguru, not only will the resolution on both of the headsets be higher than anything the competition is offering, but the price will also be substantially lower. As of right now, the Rift and Vive are sitting between $600 to $800, not including the price of any games you might want. That’s a high bar for entry and definitely one of the reasons that VR hasn’t taken off. The Acer headset comes in at $299.99($399.99 with the controllers.) and the HP headset is priced at $329.99, the former aimed at consumers and the latter at developers. That’s a major price difference compared to the more expensive competition. I don’t think I need to tell you that a lot more people will probably buy into VR with a more affordable option on the market. The only thing that could make it better would be for it to be wireless.

And while these headsets may be made by Acer and HP on behalf of Microsoft, they’re tied to Windows 10 as far as I can tell, and considering their main use is likely to be gaming, I get the sneaking suspicion that they’ll also be compatible with Xbox’s Project Scorpio. The console is more powerful than the PS4 Pro which can support the PSVR, so it isn’t a stretch to imagine that Scorpio can support as well and run it better. And since Scorpio is a Windows 10 machine, so long as there’s a way to hook it up and supply it enough power, I don’t see why it can’t work unless there’s a hardware issue.

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