Will the HoloLens Be a Nightmare for Xbox Fans in the Near Future?
It would only be logical to assume that the fact that Microsoft is working on an augmented reality device as powerful as the HoloLens would be a source of excitement for gamers who are expecting to eventually be able to use the headset for Xbox One gaming. While this may in fact eventually happen in the long run, the short term implications of Microsoft’s focus on the HoloLens could be a less than ideal gaming situation for the current owners of the Xbox One console.
Is Microsoft Spurning VR for AR for Now?
Whilst those who own a Sony Playstation 4 are already in a frenzy about Sony’s release of their compatible PS VR headset come October for less than $400, Xbox One console owners have been left in the dark with respect to the Microsoft’s virtual reality gaming ambitions.
Is it possible that Microsoft is actually working on a VR headset that’s compatible with the Xbox One, whilst still spending hundreds of millions of dollars on R&D for their HoloLens augmented reality headset? It is possible, but rather unlikely. With E3 2016 about to kick off in a little more than seven weeks, an event, which if Microsoft were to announce a VR headset, would likely be the place, there have been absolutely no leaks of such intentions.
The question then is, what is Microsoft’s plan? Will they allow Sony to gain an even larger share of the console gaming market, as gamers turn to the Playstation 4 for their VR needs? What is quite likely is that at the very earliest, due to the absence of a new Microsoft Virtual Reality headset, gaming which is comparable to that offered by the PS VR would have to wait until late 2017.
How will Gamers React?
While Sony is close to selling 40 million PS4 consoles already, Microsoft’s Xbox One sales still fall shy of 20 million units thus far, it appears then, as if the PlayStation 4 will easily walk away the winner within the console gaming space at least in the foreseeable future. This is bad news for those who already own an Xbox One, as developers have started investing heavily into the creation of virtual reality content, all the while budgets for traditional games are bound to be cut.
It makes you wonder then if it is the HoloLens that is holding back Microsoft’s gaming ambitions. Although it is still possible that a VR headset will come from the company, it seems more likely that they are putting all of their AR/VR eggs into the HoloLens basket, and as it stands, those eggs will not be hatching until later next year.
In the meantime, Xbox gamers are left in limbo, contemplating whether they should perhaps splash out on a Playstation 4 or simply hold out and wait to see what, if anything, Microsoft will offer within in terms of VR. As for Sony right now, they have to be bullish on their sales prospects because Nintendo will not have a device ready by the Holidays, and, besides the expensive Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets they will be the only high-quality VR gaming experience available come the Holiday season.