Acer's developer edition Windows Mixed Reality Headset now available

Though it has been available for preorder since Microsoft's Build 2017 developer conference in May, Acer's Windows Mixed Reality Headset Developer Edition is now generally available through the Microsoft Store (opens in new tab) (via Neowin). HP's developer headset is also available as of today and previous orders are shipping, but it is currently listed as (opens in new tab) out of stock on the Microsoft Store.

As far as specs are concerned, each headset features two 1440 x 1440 LCD displays with a 2.89-inch diagonal display size. Each headset also covers a 95-degree horizontal field of view and a 90 Hz native refresh rate. Part of what makes Microsoft's Windows Mixed Reality efforts interesting, inside-out tracking, is also on board, eliminating the need for the types of external sensors that you see with VR headsets that are currently on the market.

With so many shared specs, the main differences the two headsets lie in their designs, and even those are fairly similar. The biggest difference is that the Acer unit features a glossy blue aesthetic, while HP has opted for matte black.

If you're interested, you can find the Acer's developer headset up for grabs for $299 directly through the Microsoft Store now. HP's headset will be available for $329 once it is back in stock.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl

  • Now, that is affordable pricing for VR headsets.
  • It's not VR. Its augmented/mixed reality.
  • Opps. I was in hurry when typing that comment. You're right bro. It is even better no other brand is offfering mixed reality this cheap. If MS and its partners market it properly then it could get very popular in the consumers.
  • Well... Technically, the demo is a VR though. Augmented/mixed reality should combine real world and digital world (like in Hololens). My thought is that two camera is not only act as tracking sensors, but can also act as real camera so user can actually see the real world in front of him/her. But since the processing unit is still in desktop/laptop, I don't think that would be much use case for that approach, unless they can make the headset connected wirelessly to desktop/laptop.
  • Yeah no, augmented reality is specifically defined as having a direct or indirect view of the real world around you.
  • Mixed Reality (which is a marketing term for AR)... End of story.
  • It is a pure VR headset using the Windows MR software platform (which supports both VR and AR).
  • AARRGGGH! Microsoft has explained this countless times! Mixed Reality is the entire spectrum and includes AR as well as VR. These headsets are immersive MR, and thus are very close to pure "VR" on the MR spectrum, but have some "reality" mixed in due to the cameras being able to detect real-world objects that the user might run into, and insert visual cues into the virtual world to alert the user. They do not have a video see-through option, and are not "AR" headsets at all. Mixed reality is not just a synonym for AR, nor is it a Microsoft-coined buzzword. It has a distinct meaning and has been used in some form since 1995. Not replying to any one person specifically, but the thread as a whole. UIt's frustrating to see the same misinformation posted on every article dealing with the MR headsets, when the true information is right there on the Microsoft MR pages.
  • 95 fov....thought I would be better with this next generation of headsets :(
  • These are about reaching a better price than Rift/Vive, and not limiting the world size by the # of sensors due to the camera-based tracking. THey are not "next gen" headsets, a la StarVR.
  • Most consumers own or certainly have at least tried some kind of VR. However AR is new to most for glasses type devices. Sure u can use AR on just your phone of course but not the same.   Can these new MR devices do anything holographic?   Genuine question, what is to persuade me to purchase one of these? I have a Samsung gear vr headset which does a job. But obviously that is only VR  
  • Peoples idea of holographic just isn't the same as what we used to dream about. Holographic images in movies used to be free of glasses, and right their in your face.. Guess that's still a long way off.🙄🙄🙄🙄
  • They do not do "holographic" as you are thinking. they are purely "immersive" MR headsets, not "holographic" MR headsets. The advantage they offer over a Gear VR is that they have 6 degree of freedom tracking (most mobile still only does orientation tracking) and you can roam a larger space than with Rift/Vive because of the cameras on the headset doing the tracking and not external tracker boxes. They will also offer better fidelity graphics than GearVR, ass they are tethered to a PC which will have higher spoecs than the mobile phione chipsets used in GearVR.
  • Who said they do Holographic?
  • The original poster who literally asked, "Can these new MR devices do anything holographic?"
  • the new OEM headsets will be a mix of VR and VR/AR functionality. Lenovo has the best setup imo.
  • Sorry you are wrong, this is VR by definition. Both of these headsets are VR. They are both, however, also a part of the Windows Mixed Reality Platform, which encompassed both VR and AR. Some device will be one or the other, while the ultimate goal would be devices that have both capabilities.
  • What is different between VR, AR and mixed reality?
  • Easy... Virtual Reality engulfs your entire field of view with it's own image, not including anything that is physically in front of you, although its possible to include present immages, Imagine. VR can take you to other realties in entirety, like putting you on Mars.
    AR is your physical world augmented with images that are manipulated by the users.. You could be in your living room, still see your living room, but the glasses would allow you to see Netflix on your wall, or your Grandmamma standing on your coffee table doing the Macarena... Mixed reality really is just a marketing term for MS's system. It's not it's own reality besides VR/AR.. MR really just is a marketing term for Augmented Reality.
  • Wrong. Read the Microsoft page that explains what MR is, or look at one of my posts above.
  • Ok, so it encompasses all aspects. Nice.. Now go away, MR. know it all. Lol
  • I work in the VR field as a software developer, so I am a bit touchy when people misuse terms.
  • VR: Blocks your view of the outside world and creates an entirely artificial environment. Always uses a headset, with various means of tracking your movement AR: Allows almost unimpeded view of the outside world but adds some artificial elements that appear to interact with real world objects. Implemented by a visor or a handheld phone/tablet. MR: Sometimes used as another term for AR, sometimes also used to describe combinations of VR and AR.
  • Just plugged in my HP MR Headset to my Surface Studio. Having a little trouble with display keeps dropping out. Is that due to a bad miniDP to HDMI connector? Or is it a hardware performance issue? Anyone else using a similar rig or know of a solid forum to plug into?
  • Why no pictures?
  • I hope to try out work's HP one this week. I have both a high-end rig (980Ti) and a SUrface Pro (2017) -- I will let you know what I experience on both.
  • I just plugged in the HP device to my Surface pro, and I got a lot of screen flickering, no display on the device, and eventually the Surface pro screen went black and unresponsive. had to reboot. Is that what you are experiencing with the Surface Studio? (also: tried to post this comment via the windows 10 app, and the post button didn't work)
  • I got similar behavior from my desktop PC with dual 980Ti cards. It looks like there may be a driver or some other configuration issue. I will investigate and get back with more info as I find it out.
  • Did you ever resolve your issues? Ran similar tests with a 980ti rig and had the same problem, signal drops on the headset. When I swapped the 980ti for a 1080 from another station, the issues were resolved. Not exactly a workable solution..
  • I'm having the same problem with Acer headset on Surface Pro 4.