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Windows Mixed Reality headsets now available on the Microsoft Store

Windows Mixed Reality Headsets by Acer (left) and HP (right). (Source: Microsoft)
Windows Mixed Reality Headsets by Acer (left) and HP (right). (Source: Microsoft)
The Acer and HP Windows Mixed Reality Headsets are now listed on the Microsoft Store for US$299 and US$329 respectively. The requirements listed are much higher than what was originally promised, but since these are targeted at developers, those might only be the specifications for development.

In May Microsoft started accepting pre-orders from developers for the Windows Mixed Reality Headset developer kit. Now both the Acer and HP headsets are listed on the United States Windows Store, but you shouldn't buy one yet. The listings for both products say that they are for developers only, which of course means that there isn't going to be any content for consumers to use with them. However, we can gain an insight into the devices from these pages.

Specs:

  • 2 x 2.89 inch LCDs
  • 1440 x 1440 resolution
  • 90 Hz refresh rate
  • 95-degree horizontal field of view
  • 1 x HDMI 2.0
  • 1 x USB 3.0 (data)
  • 4 meter (13 feet 2 inches) cable — the HP unit specifies removable cable and an additional 60 cm (23 1/2 inches) cable

Several months ago Microsoft claimed that the minimum specifications needed to run the headsets as an end-user are much lower than current virtual reality headsets and would work well with entry level PCs running integrated graphics. If you are a developer, however, then the system requirements are significantly higher than entry level:

  • 16 GB RAM or higher
  • Windows 10 with creators update and developer mode enabled

Whether this means that the dream of entry-level mixed reality usage is dead, or if the development requirements are just higher remains to be seen.

It will be interesting to see what kinds of software developers come up with over the next few months. Since these headsets use dual front cameras to give a mixed reality experience, we wonder if they will find more applications within a shop or showroom environment. Imagine putting one on at the car dealership and seeing the different paint options overlaid on the car in front of you, or going to an empty house section you purchased and overlaying the designs of available house plans from which to choose.

The Acer model is US$299 and the sold out HP model is US$329.

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2017 08 > Windows Mixed Reality headsets now available on the Microsoft Store
Craig Ward, 2017-08- 1 (Update: 2017-08- 1)
Craig Ward
Craig Ward - News Editor
I grew up in a family surrounded by technology, starting with my father loading up games for me on a Commodore 64, and later on a 486. In the late 90's and early 00's I started learning how to tinker with Windows, while also playing around with Linux distributions, both of which gave me an interest for learning how to make software do what you want it to do, and modifying settings that aren't normally user accessible. After this I started building my own computers, and tearing laptops apart, which gave me an insight into hardware and how it works in a complete system. Now keeping up with the latest in hardware and software news is a passion of mine.