Microsoft has confirmed that it will begin shipping #Mixed Reality kits aimed at game developers. These kits include a headset, as well as a software development kit that will allow developers to create their own mixed reality apps.

First for developers, then for users

After the initial shipping of kits for developers, the expectation is that the headsets will start being available to the public later in the year. According to #Windows representatives, the platform currently allows for over 20000 Universal Windows apps: some games, some tools, and even the ability to connect one's Windows 10 to their Xbox One in order to stream games from the console directly to the PC.

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Mixed Reality cross-platform

According to Microsoft, this is just the beginning. Last October they already introduced an update for Windows 10 in order to facilitate the creation of #virtual reality and 3D content, and this is simply the next step in a series of decisions to bring Mixed Reality to the forefront. Other devices that should be given these development tools soon include the Xbox One and Project Scorpio.

Project Scorpio is an upcoming, more potent and enhanced version of the Xbox, which will have 4k compatibility and is expected to launch later in the year. Given the enormous numbers of sales of Virtual Reality devices and headsets in the console fan market, whenever Project Scorpio and the Xbox One finally get their own device, demand is certain to be huge. Since October, Microsoft's competitor Sony has already sold over 900000 headsets for their PlayStation VR.

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There are already theories floating around that the VR devices Microsoft has promised will be fully compatible with Project Scorpio's Virtual Reality systems as soon as they are launched, and that the ability for Mixed Reality will follow with an update somewhere in 2018.

What's similar, and what's different

There are already a few Virtual Reality headsets out in the market today, including the HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift, and PlayStation VR. Microsoft's Virtual Reality is slightly different, using internal tracking instead of external sensors to figure out where the player is located.

It's unclear what system will be more accurate, but experimentation and variety are certain to create a more competitive market with better quality products. And given the Virtual Reality market is currently dominated by only a few, extremely popular systems, the arrival of Microsoft's Mixed Reality will certainly be a positive.