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New Windows dev kit delivers mixed reality apps to developers

Another step forward for Microsoft in its mixed reality journey.

By Hannah Williams

Microsoft will begin rolling-out its first Windows mixed reality development kit later this month, signalling a major step forward in the tech giant’s plans for the technology.

The company confirmed that it will begin to ship developer edition headsets in partnership with Acer later this month. This follows on from Microsoft’s announcement last year that it will be partnering with device makers such as Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP and Lenovo to deploy a range of headsets to be paired with Windows Mixed Reality-ready PC.

The roll-out of the developer kits will include the Acer headset, as well as a software development kit (SDK) which contains a Windows 10 Insider preview. The SDK is a core element in the offering, allowing developers to build mixed reality applications.

The new development edition headset includes two high-resolution crystal displays, built-in audio and microphone support, and a single cable with HDMI 2.0 display and USB 3.0 for data connectivity.

Read more: Windows 10 gets 3D and VR revamp as Microsoft Surface gets a studio

It will also be the first mixed reality headset to deliver built-in inside-out tracking, which removes the need to purchase or install external trackers or wall sensors.

Also part of the mixed reality experience journey, Microsoft says the dev kit will also be available for other devices as time goes on. Its plan is to deliver mixed reality content for Xbox On devices, with the inclusion of Project Scorpio in 2018.

In a blog post Alex Kipman, Technical fellow, Microsoft said: “We can’t wait to see what our developer partners build with our expanding platform, which currently delivers more than 20,000 Universal Windows applications, including mixed reality apps and games as well as the ability to stream Xbox games to your Windows 10 PC.”

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This follows on after the company’s previous launch of a creators update for Windows 10 for 3D and VR media in October 2016.

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