Asus enters Windows Mixed Reality with featherweight headset built for comfort

Asus showed off its Windows Mixed Reality headset at IFA 2017. The device is part of Microsoft’s effort to bring virtual reality to the masses, which will see the company collaborate with a number of other manufacturers to launch new hardware.

We saw a glimpse of Asus’ headset at Computex 2017 in May, but now the company supplied some more information on what to expect from the device. It weighs just 400 grams, and utilizes a balanced-crown design to reduce pressure on the nose and face, ensuring that users are comfortable even when wearing it for long periods of time.

The headset has an unusual design, with the visor covered in hundreds of polygons sporting a tone-on-tone effect. The inside is coated with antibacterial cushioned materials to keep things hygienic.

The headset has an unusual design, with the visor covered in hundreds of polygons sporting a tone-on-tone effect.

Like other recently announced Windows Mixed Reality headsets, Asus uses inside-out tracking that hinges upon two built-in front-facing cameras, which offer six-degrees-of-freedom positional tracking. The headset does not require any external sensors, or even any additional software to take care of the setup process, which the manufacturer claims will make it much easier for users to get up and running right away.

A big part of Microsoft’s plan to promote augmented reality involves making the technology accessible and easy to use. The plug-and-play aspect of Asus’ headset certainly seems to be inspired by this idea.

“We are excited about our collaboration with Asus to deliver a Windows Mixed Reality headset, unlocking amazing content experiences on an affordable and easy-to-set-up device,” Peter Han, Microsoft’s vice president of Partner Devices and Solutions, said in a statement. “Windows Mixed Reality, paired with Asus design and materials, enables a comfortable and fun experience for customers to achieve more and let their imagination wander.”

Windows Mixed Reality controllers on

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Asus vice president Eric Chen said that he was “thrilled” about the company’s collaboration with Microsoft, and described virtual reality hardware as “the forefront of technology.”

The company did not announce a firm release date, or details on pricing and specifications, such as resolution. However, all signs point toward the first wave of Windows Mixed Reality hardware — including Microsoft’s own headset — launching before the end of 2017.


Is the 5G spectrum harmful to our health? Experts say, 'Don't freak out'

There's plenty of consumer anxiety about radiofrequency (RF) radiation, specifically around millimeter waves (mmWave) used on 5G networks, but is it based in reality? We asked the FDA to give us its official view on the subject.

The HoloLens 2 will be announced at MWC. Here's what we know about it so far

The HoloLens 2 is ripe for an announcement. Here's what Microsoft has revealed so far, what's likely in store for the next generation HoloLens, and everything that we know about this mixed reality headset.
Virtual Reality

Getting into VR is spendy. Which headset is truly worth your hard-earned cash?

Virtual reality has finally gone mainstream, but how do you find the best VR headset for you? Check out a few of our favorites, whether you want the best of the best or a budget alternative for your mobile device.

To be blunt, the Vuzix Blade smartglasses just don’t cut it

We tried out the Vuzix Blade to find out if it’s worth shelling out $1,000 for smartglasses. Are these augmented reality, Android-powered glasses really ready for primetime or just an expensive gimmick that no one really needs?

These Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts will take your skills to a new level

Windows 10 has many new features, and they come flanked with useful new keyboard shortcuts. Check out some of the new Windows 10 keyboard shortcuts to improve your user experience and save more time!

What is Wi-Fi 6? Here's a look at the next evolution of the wireless standard

We're exploring the new naming convention for wireless standards, how it affects the devices you buy, and what the upcoming Wi-Fi generation is changing for the better.

Windows is getting a face-lift in 2020, but you can get a sneak peek right now

Microsoft is increasing the lead time for an upcoming major update to Windows 10, giving Windows Insiders the ability to test it right now, even though it's not set for release until 2020.
Emerging Tech

A.I.-powered website creates freakishly lifelike faces of people who don’t exist

No, this isn't a picture of a missing person. It's a face generated by a new artificial intelligence on the website Here's how the impressive A.I. works.

The best Presidents’ Day sales 2019: Amazon, Walmart, Dell, and more

Presidents' Day sales are a great chance to score electronics, clothing, home and office stuff, and other goodies at a discount. We’ve smoked out a large handful of the best of these Presidents' Day deals, from tech to bedding, to help…

Keep your MacBook safe and dry with an Under Armour backpack for under $50

Under Armour is having a huge sale this weekend to help you on your quest for a better backpack. The UA Outlet Exclusive sale is going on now through Monday, February 18th, offering great discounts on stormproof backpacks.

Walmart Presidents’ Day sale: Instant Pot, Google Home, and 4K TV deals

Presidents' Day weekend is one of the best times of the year to find deep discounts on 4K TVs, laptops, Instant Pots, clothes, mattresses, and furniture. And Walmart is offering deals on all of those things and more.

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.

Wi-Fi helps connect all of our devices at high-speed, but what exactly is it?

What is Wi-Fi? It's a technology we all use everyday to connect all of our portable devices, but understanding how it works and how far it's come from its humble beginnings is another thing entirely.

In the age of Alexa and Siri, Cortana’s halo has grown dim

In a sea of voice assistants, Cortana has become almost irrelevant. The nearly five-year-old voice assistant is seeing little love from consumers, and here’s why it is dead.