At the WinHEC event today, Microsoft officially revealed the minimum specifications required to power these VR and mixed-reality headsets; powered by Windows Holographic, these $300 headsets don’t really need beastly hardware like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive demand.
Here are the minimum specifications:
- CPU: Intel Mobile Core i5 (e.g. 7200U) Dual-Core with Hyperthreading equivalent
- GPU: Integrated Intel® HD Graphics 620 (GT2) equivalent or greater DX12 API Capable GPU
- RAM: 8GB+ Dual Channel required for integrated Graphics
- HDMI: HDMI 1.4 with 2880×1440 @ 60 Hz or HDMI 2.0 or DP 1.3+ with 2880×1440 @ 90 Hz
- HDD:100GB+ SSD (Preferred) / HDD
- USB: USB 3.0 Type-A or USB 3.1 Type-C Port with DisplayPort Alternate Mode
- Bluetooth: Bluetooth 4.0 for Accessories
These specifications fit in line with the earlier mistakenly-released specifications – and as we mentioned, they can prove to become quite a big thorn for Oculus and HTC.
Microsoft and Intel have determined these specifications in a partnership the two have dubbed as ‘Project Evo.’ This partnership isn’t just limited to the VR headsets either.
The Project Evo partnership also affects Microsoft products like Windows Hello and Cortana – you can read more about that here.
Microsoft wants to start shipping developer kits for these new VR headsets by February of next year; Microsoft also plans on demoing and distributing the dev kits at the upcoming Game Developers Conference in San Francisco in March 2017.
For now, there is no specific timeline or date for the retail launch of these headsets – of course, Microsoft isn’t going to be manufacturing these headsets itself but OEMs like Asus, HP, Dell, Acer, Lenovo, et all, so a definite release date is hard to speculate.
Microsoft, of course, hasn’t gone into a lot of detail about the VR experience for Windows Holographic or how it would be different from HoloLens – time will tell what Microsoft has in store for us.