Microsoft held a conference today introducing the world to Windows Mixed Reality. Several developers have announced headsets for the software giant including Samsung, Acer, Dell, HP and Lenovo, to name a few.
Mixed reality will be available on all Windows PCs beginning with the release of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. Obviously, this means you can’t be a Windows 7 or 8.1 holdover but you’ll have to fully commit to Windows 10. The Creators Update hits October 17.
Also on October 17, something exciting for both fans of mixed reality and Halo is happening. As Microsoft continues to push its HoloLens and mixed reality, it has partnered up with arguably its biggest first-party IP in Halo. Fans of the series will get a glimpse at Halo: Recruit which is described as a “fun, brief introduction into the world of Halo” and they’ll see several iconic characters from the series along the way. While this sounds more like a tech demo rather than a full game, it is still something that should interest fans.
Halo: Recruit will be a free-to-play title and it will be available to try out in Microsoft Stores or on the Windows Store as a free download. We don’t really have anything to expect other than seeing Halo in mixed reality for the first time.
Microsoft is positioning Windows Mixed Reality as something that will include both augmented and virtual reality with the new HoloLens being for AR. The Windows Mixed Reality headsets that were announced today will all be used for VR and they are all available now for pre-order.
To help solidify Microsoft’s positioning in the mixed reality market, Microsoft announced that SteamVR titles will work on their devices. This means all the VR games you purchased on Steam will work on these headsets with no issues. It’s good to see Microsoft playing nice with the other players in the game.
Microsoft has a plethora of partners on board with their Mixed Reality program including 343 Industries, Steam, Minecraft and many more. You can see some the partners in the image above. Starting today, developers will be provided access to the Windows Mixed Reality SteamVR preview so they can try out their experiences. This holiday, consumers will get access to this preview. In all, there will be more than 20,000 apps available for the product at launch.
You’re probably interested in whether you’ll need a beefy PC to run mixed reality and we’ve got the answer. There are two different ways to run mixed reality – in either 60 FPS or 90 FPS – all depending on how good your PC is.
For normal mixed reality at 60 FPS, we aren’t really looking at the strongest of PCs. You could actually run the mixed reality headsets with Intel’s integrated graphics but it does recommend a seventh generation Kaby Lake i5 processor.
For 90 FPS, you’ll need to be running a discrete graphics card at least as powerful as a GTX 960 or RX 460 on AMD’s side. Here are the full specs needed:
|Windows Mixed Reality Ultra PCs (90 FPS)||Windows Mixed Reality PCs (60 FPS)|
|Operating System||Windows 10 Fall Creators Update||Windows 10 Fall Creators Update|
|Processor||Intel Core i5 4590 (4th generation), quad core (or better) AMD Ryzen 5 1400 3.4Ghz (desktop), quad core (or better)||Intel Core i5 7200U (7th generation mobile), dual core with Intel® Hyper-Threading Technology enabled (or better)|
|RAM||8 GB DDR3 (or better)||8 GB DDR3 dual channel (or better)|
|HDD Space||At least 10 GB||At least 10 GB|
|GPU||NVidia GTX 960/965M/1050 (or greater) DX12-capable discrete GPU AMD RX 460 (or greater) DX12-capable discrete GPU GPU must be hosted in a PCIe 3.0 x4+ Link slot||Integrated Intel® HD Graphics 620 (or greater) DX12-capable integrated GPU|
|USB Connectivity||USB 3.0 Type-A or Type-C||USB 3.0 Type-A or Type-C|
|Graphics Display Port||HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort 1.2||HDMI 1.4 or DisplayPort 1.2|