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Microsoft plans to win VR race

  • Author:Andy
  • Source:chinatopwin
  • Release on:2016-12-16
Microsoft plans to win VR race

Virtual reality applications in China now exceed those in the United States MA SI
Microsoft Corp said on Thursday its mixed reality headset, called HoloLens, will come to 
China in the first half of 2017, as the United States tech giant steps up efforts to tap into 
the country's software developers and into local firms' desire to achieve digital transformation.
Terry Myerson, the executive vice-president of the Windows and Devices company at 
Microsoft, said the firm will launch HoloLens for Chinese developers and commercial 
customers. He did not disclose the specific price tag, just saying it will be around $3,000, 
roughly the same as in other countries.
"We believe China, or, broadly speaking, Asia, could be leading the world in terms of 
mixed reality. We are seeing more virtual-reality-enabled activities here than in the 
United States," Myerson said on the sidelines of a manufacturing partner conference 
in Shenzhen.
HoloLens allows users to view virtual objects and characters in the real life environment. 
Microsoft is competing with Google Inc-backed Magic Leap and other players in the race 
for lead in the nascent market.
The company also published technical specifications it co-developed with Intel Corp for 
PCs that can power headsets capable of mixed reality. Lenovo Group Holding Ltd, Dell 
Inc and other PC vendors will start shipping the first VR goggles next year.
These gadgets will come with the Windows 10 Creators Update, the latest version of 
its Windows operating system. And unlike other VR headsets, there will be no need for 
a separate room and complicated setup, Microsoft said.
James Yan, research director at Counterpoint Technology Market Research, said the 
move is part of Microsoft's broad efforts to build a virtual reality ecosystem.
"Microsoft has a dominant position in the PC operating system market, but it missed 
opportunities in smartphones. Now it is seeking to replicate its success in virtual reality 
gadgets," Yan said.
Asked when HoloLens will become available in the consumer market over the next 
three to five years, Myerson quoted Bill Gates. "We often overestimate what will 
happen in the next three years and underestimate what will change in the next 10 years."
Yan from Counterpoint said: "Currently, HoloLens is still too expensive for consumers. 
If the price is lowered to below 10,000 yuan ($1,470), it will gain an advantage," Yan said.
According to market research firm Net Applications, the Windows 10 operating system 
accounted for 23.7 percent of the PC market in October, a rise of 1.1 percentage points 
from the previous month.