When the Xbox One X was first unveiled under its early “Project Scorpio” codename, Microsoft established several key pillars at the heart of the console experience. While 4K resolution and High Dynamic Range (HDR) are main selling points for its release, virtual reality (VR), a feature first discussed as a part of its unveiling, appears to have disappeared off the radar.
In an interview with CNBC, Panos Panay, corporate vice president of devices at Microsoft was asked about whether Microsoft’s Windows Mixed Reality headsets – which are now available – would come to the console, saying that you may: “start to see that happen.”
“Mixed reality can span in so many different forms,” Panay went on to say. “Whether it’s off the back of the device, whether it’s in virtual reality headsets that you have, or its HoloLens, you are starting to see that span through Windows and that platform for Windows does bring it to life.”
With this silence, VR doesn’t look to be a feature of the Xbox One X anytime soon. However, following the launch of Microsoft’s first full-fledged VR platform, Windows Mixed Reality, its place in the company’s gaming strategy is clear. Microsoft might not be looking to commit to delivering high fidelity console VR right now but looks to be a likely addition to the Xbox One X in the years ahead.
Microsoft originally touted VR as a driving force behind the Xbox One X specs, which were supposed to bring high-fidelity VR to the console in addition to 4K gaming. Since the reveal, though, all mention of VR vanished from the related marketing.
And there’s another glaring reason for the company to do it, PlayStation VR. Sony Interactive Entertainment’s (SIE) headset has certainly been the sales winner when compared to PC rivals Oculus Rift and HTC Vive which could largely be attributed to PlayStation 4’s massive adoption and that PlayStation VR was the cheapest headset until Oculus Rift’s recent price drop.
Certainly having VR as an added sales incentive wouldn’t hurt Xbox One X sales, plus Windows Mixed Reality headsets offer technology like inside-out tracking which will give players far more freedom than the PlayStation Camera setup, as well as multiple designs.