More light has been shed on the mystery of Microsft’s plans for virtual reality. The software giant is partnering with Intel to make VR hardware successful among Windows users – a market where current virtual reality products such as Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive have only enjoyed mediocre success. Keen to not recreate the errors of their competition, Intel has a different approach in mind for their own VR hardware which is known as Alloy.
Project Alloy was recently demonstrated at the Intel Developer’s Forum and the headset is packed with a number of exclusive technologies such as Intel’s RealSense 3D for imaging.
Curiously enough, Intel does not intend to produce Alloy headsets itself. Their approach is to license the technology to other hardware companies in a manner similar to how technologies such as Blu-ray are licensed to manufacturers. This means you could potentially see Alloy headsets from Dell, Samsung or even Microsoft.
As it turns out, Microsoft was also present at the Intel Developer’s Forum. They announced plans to make their own VR initiative a part of Windows and Intel’s Alloy will work with devices running Microsoft’s operating system. In theory, this combination of open-source hardware and VR support built into a mainstream operating system will make virtual reality more accessible to businesses, universities, and general consumers than competing products.
When Project Scorpio was announced during Microsoft’s E3 2016 press conference, Phil Spencer confirmed that the upcoming console will support VR gaming. It is not clear if Microsoft is developing their own VR headset or if they will partner with an existing company such as Oculus Rift. The recent announcement with Intel raises a strong possibility that Scorpio will actually work with the Alloy VR headset instead.
Expect more news from TICGN regarding Project Alloy when it is available.