Video demo of Windows Mixed Reality in the Fall Creators Update

Windows Mixed Reality is a new platform Microsoft is pushing with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update that brings Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality under one roof. You've seen HoloLens, now see that same idea redone for the world of Virtual Reality.

We've gone hands-on with Microsoft's new Windows Mixed Reality experience to showcase what Windows Mixed Reality actually is and how it can be used for fun or productivity purposes. Mixed Reality requires compatible dedicated hardware to function, you can find out more about all the Mixed Reality headsets here.

in our demo, we're using the HP's own Mixed Reality headset. Starting on October 17, you will be able to buy headsets from many manufacturers, as well as purchase dedicated Windows Mixed Reality controllers. Mixed Reality works with dedicated controllers, gaming controllers or a keyboard and mouse. In our demo, we're using an Xbox One controller.

So, make sure you check out our 23-minute video walkthrough of the Windows Mixed Reality platform and let us know what you think in the comments.

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • I'm getting a VR headset for this for sure, but serious question - As it's UWP only (Like HoloLens AFAIK) what will be suitable for streaming music etc. outside of using the browser. or maybe I'm wrong and Win32 apps run fine in Windows Mixed Reality?
  • Spotify? Groove? SoundCloud? iTunes is on its way.
  • Groove until end of the year sure - I thought we could only run UWP apps that run on HoloLens though for some reason. Is that not right? Spotify is not available on HoloLens, so assumed it's not available to run in Windows MR. Maybe that is just a HoloLens limitation though since MR does run directly off your connected PC. If it can run all Win32 apps, I want to be able to run non-store apps too like Visual Studio
  • Groove keeps existing, just the Music pass goes away.
  • I want something with a streaming service, as it works out cheaper for me. I'm going to switch to Prime Music, which sounds like it will work through the "Desktop" app in MR. Probably going to cancel Netflix and switch to Prime Video too and see how that goes, if my TV has a Prime Video app (think it does) - Saves quite a bit of money but will have to see how I get on, Netflix has a lot of content I like especially the original documentaries and the Marvel series they do.
  • Spotify and iTunes is Win32 in the core and won't install, Groove is dead according to latest news, SoundCloud is not really a streaming service, you cannot listen all artists. But maybe I'm wrong with Win32 on mixed reality.
  • Napster has a Windows 10 app that works on mixed reality.
  • Huh, how did I not know that Napster have a full UWP app that is available on all Windows 10 platforms.
  • Groove, VLC and others are available as UWP.
    Also, they included a Desktop app that shows your standard 2D desktop within the VR experience. Not ideal, but makes it possible to control legacy apps as if they were on a screen within your VR environment.
  • That's not too bad as long as they run - You could stick any traditional app, even non-store into full screen mode and it would work, they just all have to be part of one Window then is the downside. At least it means Amazon Music will be able to run, I've used a music subscription for years as it's cheaper for me than buying all the music I want, and new albums as they come out so want something that has the service aspect too. Unrelated really but I'm pretty sure the VLC dev who did the UWP version said on Twitter he had to force himself to use the UWP version during development and hates that version lol - Not related or anything against UWP, just thought that was a funny thing for him to say
  • You can see at the end of the video that desktop apps can be used with Desktop App! You can run anything which runs on your PC in real time;")
  • I would assume any win32 app that's been migrated using the Desktop bridge 'should' work in Windows Mixed Reality, at least in its basic capacity.  I suppose some APIs would need to be updated like background audio, as you have mentioned.  I guess we'll see as more applications are wrapped and deployed as apps. 
  • Should do with these tethered VR headsets, but doesn't on HoloLens, but that's not really a real thing right now for consumers so VR will probably be their consumer facing MR tech for at least a few more years.
  • pandora/plus, deezer music come to mind
  • also spoticast music
  • So next year they'll dump MR
  • Why do you post such a comment? Grow up please.
    Sometimes you win and sometimes you loose.
  • He's not wrong to be cautious, this demo looks very unconvincing and with Microsoft of today if a product doesnt take off immediately it seems its for the chop. I can easily see this being dropped silently and allowed to just fade into obscurity like so many other products.
  • This^. Based on my history with Microsoft products and services. I will ask my self this question before committing to anything, is it at risk of being shutdown by Microsoft. Because frankly, I don't see MR and HoloLens taking off in a market where there is ARkit and zero marketing from Microsoft
  • Yeah, you being mostly negative, I can imagine you would think that way. Regarding chopping or not, that's the same with every company.
  • Well fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. So I'm being aware not negative of what Microsoft can do before I invest in such things. It's not a matter of what I love now.
  • Fine. Just post with common sense and not like a.. you know what I mean. Just get something else when you're not satisfied with what you got. Makes the world a nicer place to be in.
  • It's not being negative, it's being realistic. It's seems like if a product doesn't instantly make money for MS it gets dropped. I can't see this making money till the store is sorted and MS actually does some marketing which isn't going to be anytime soon. The reason why Samsung is the largest phone manufacturer in the world is because it poured money into marketing the galaxy phone's over years, MS doesn't do that. Enthusiast's will buy it, consumers won't even know about it, take up will be minimal therefore hardly any revenue for MS.
  • All the hardware is 3rd party, so they will be doing the advertising/promoting. MS already have videos out there pushing the Win10 side of things, it's up to the manufacturers to push the hardware.
  • Where is MS marketing? It's not in the mainstream media/TV. The occasional TV ad in the UK is for surface and they are pretty rare. I probably see 20 Apple and Samsung ads per Surface ad, no wonder MS is constantly playing second fiddle to everyone else know one knows about their services.
  • That's being negative. Look at the other post with all the programs/apps cancelled by other companies.
  • Take off immediately? They've had a music streaming app for a long time. I agree they never built it out worldwide as they should, but you can't honestly say they didn't give Urge/Zune/Xbox Box Music/Groove some time. I like Groove and am very disappointed in the announcement this week, but leaping from killing the inhouse streaming music app to the idea they will kill off everything that "doesn't take off immediately" is a big leap indeed.
  • Zac, is the framerate better than it looks in the video? (watching in the WC app on PC). It's looking pretty choppy here. What hardware are you running on PC wise? Didn't hear that mentioned
  • Seems more like a novelty than a product that is actually useful. The view of the Roman city was about the only thing that appeared preferable over a normal monitor. I have high hopes for mixed reality in the future, but it clearly has a ways to go before it becomes something I would buy into. 
  • I think it's still mostly useful for games, and for education too - Although a bit expensive for most schools to have enough for a full class. From the education perspective Gear VR is must more likely to be useful, or Google Cardboard on a cheaper Android phone.
  • Those are not comparable products.
  • Which, Gear VR and Windows MR? I agree not at all the same for games and no comparison there, but as an affordable yet still very immersive experience for education something that runs on cheaper phones is definitely viable - There are quite a few schools doing things w/ Google Cardboard in the UK. It can provide a very immersive experience, perfectly suited to kids sitting at desks rather than moving around - But I agree, very different products but with similar use cases in Education.
  • I have been developing non-games software for these. Everyone who sees the demos have been blown away. Viewing information in stereoscopic 3D; being to walk around through and interact with information; to see information on 3 axes, rather than 2 and have more information presented because of it, makes this very valuable and changes a lot. And it goes much beyond what one of Microsoft's competitor has done, where they just show some overlays like a game that quickly became popular and quickly died off last year. That other company has promised that they will do what Microsoft is doing today, but I am writing code, getting it in front of people, and it is currently in use today, not ***soon***.
  • I have a HP and Acer developer headset. Any word if there are any changes to these, or will they be shipping the same thing without Developer Edition printed on the device?
  • The Acer headset got more comfortable! Watch here in the pics;")
  • Yeah, the back strap looks much better. It was clunky to use before, and really didn't fit right.
  • Not to sound like a pessimist but with recent failings in the Microsoft ecosystem I think buying into anything Microsoft offers right now should be carefully weighed. I thought I was going to buy the Xbox One X but now I have my doughts about pretty much anything Microsoft brings to market because there has been an overall theme...create then pull! 
  • There's no overall theme specific for Microsoft. Don't be ridiculous.
  • Google routinely cancels products and it is even called "Spring Cleaning." The Google fans cheer it on, giving it a pass and claiming that it allows them to focus on other, new product. They even had their version of Microsoft Hololens, Google Glass, which was cancelled. They then created a second version of Google Glass, that was cancelled too. Google then announces that they are going to start working on a third version, and people don't get worried that they will also cancel it, they can't wait. How many social networks has Google created, only to delete them and sometimes give a newer version, sometimes not? Apple routinely cuts features. They are on their 5th restart of their cloud system. They don't announce that their old product is going away, they often did not offer ways for users of those systems to migrate to the new ones, they removed their user's data, closed up shop, and then started charging more for the new system with fewer features that took months or years (and still really don't work) before they did not randomly delete user data or gave people what they were paying for. How many products and features have Apple cut, and no Apple fans start questioning if they should upgrade to the newer version. But Microsoft cuts a product that had far fewer users than the competition, give ample notice it will be shut down, provide a way to migrate to a competitor, gives a free subscription to the competitor, offers that service on all platforms, shuts down one small portion of their service (you will still be able to buy music off the store), and now we need to stop using everything, from Windows, to Office, to their cloud because of that product being closed. If it were any other company they would be praised for cutting the fat and focusing on other products. It looks like there is a lot of FUD around this to scare people to competitors.
  • Except MS is cutting consumer products to focus on enterprise. It's understandable for fans to be worried. A streaming service and a mobile OS is pretty integral to being able to live in a particular ecosystem. Sure Google and apple cancel services but can you imagine the uproar if Apple music was dropped or even iOS. Products they cut are often minimally used even by consumers completely in that particular ecosystem.
  • Apple: iTools, .Mac, MobileMe, iWork, built in social media in iOS11, 32bit support in iOS11, iCloudDrive, FrontRow, iPhoto with Time Machine, iPhoto, Apple bluetooth headset, Apple Hi-Fi, iPod, AirPort, Ping, their car, and many, many more. Google: Glass, CalDav, CloudConnect, iGoogle, Google Gadgets, Google Desktop, Google Buzz, Google Spaces, Google Reader, Orkut, Dodgeball, Jaiku, Google Wave, Google Buzz, and many, many more. But no, Microsoft is the only one that closes consumer products. The other companies never do.
  • You've basically just proved my point. They are mostly ancillary services equivalent to MS cancelling Rooms or messaging/Skype connection. Sure it annoys a small group of users but it doesn't leave a hole in the ecosystem.
  • Microsoft's streaming music is not an ancillary service? If they were shutting down Office, Windows, Azure, yep, that would be time to panic. But shutting down their music streaming service that had lots of competition, that even Apple has been struggling to get anyone to use, that was not vital to their strategy, that proves your "point"? When other companies have a product that has few users and are shut down, they are called "hobbies." Microsoft has a small side project, and it is shut down then it is the end of that company, proves they are a failure, blah, blah, FUD, blah.
  • I think we will have to agree to disagree. If you want to live in a particular ecosystem a music streaming service is pretty important, more important than Azure to an average consumer. Apple may be struggling with Apple music but they aren't just throwing in the towel they are signing exclusives and practically ramming it down people's throats. I'm not saying dropping groove was a bad commercial decision or that MS is doing poorly but from a consumer standpoint the outlook isn't good after W10M and now groove.
  • They cut the inhouse music streaming service that they had carried along for many years under a variety of brands. At the same time they just promoted the head of Xbox to the senior management team reporting directly to the CEO and in the past few months announced the Xbox One X, new Surface products, and a bunch of mixed reality hardware and services. I like Groove and was disappointed by that announcement, but it really doesn't seem that Microsoft is abandoning consumer products at all.
  • From the last 4 years of me following MS, you have gave the best comment yet! 
  • The update is CORRUPT and WON'T install, leaving computer POWERED off, because of it. Now just using my Windows 8.1 computer. The update NEEDS to be FIXED and repushed out to people. Please let people know it's fixed through Windows Central, so once again I can use the Windows 10 PC. Putting out an update that is flawed isn't good for Microsoft image. I'm testing Educational OS (Enterprise) which is supposed to be for schools. All schools can't afford new computers, so this has to be taken in account on the image. The Featured image 1703 has serious flaws and won't install.
  • Samsung Odyssey will be my choice of MR Headset.  It provides high resolutions with OLED screens and built-in headphone.
  • How do you know? We don't, don't we? Edit: now we do. Looks great.
  • oh my god, I love the British Cortana!  I wonder if I can turn that on here in the US?
  • Yeah, but it'll sound like Dick Van Dy ke
  • Seriously you don't want to switch to the UK Cortana - Ask any question and you get the answer on screen and the words "Here's what I found". Pretty useless for pure voice interaction and one reason why the Cortana speakers won't work in the UK right now. UK Cortana is very gimped compared to US Cortana
  • Nice
  • Thanks Zac. Great overview what's possible and how it looks like. Waiting to get mine in a couple of weeks.
  • That is the dumbest way I've ever seen for interacting with my computer.  Good grief, TETHERED? Furniture?  Just to work with my apps.  This is beyond stupid.
  • Scuba said it, so that means the exact opposite will be true, it is the smartest thing ever and easy to work with. Scuba would rather walk around for hours holding his phone at arms length, looking at the same 2D graphics we have been using for the past 30+ years overlaid on a picture of the real world, getting gorilla arm and unable to interact with the virtual world because his hands will be used to hold his phone. Scuba has shown over and over again that he would rather be stuck in the past rather than advancing. If he had his way, we would still be sitting in front of CRT monitors, looking at CGA 4-color graphics at 320x240. Some people enjoy being luddites.
  • Scuba I'm with you!  Tethered?!  This reminds me of 1980 when my remote to my vhs had a long cord tethered to it.  Brings back the good ole days!  LOL! :)
  • You know technology has to start somewhere. Sure, it will eventually become small/powerful enough to be completely wireless and deliver a great experience, but we're not quite there yet. 
  • Well, with Microsoft they'll get close to the finish line then quit.  That's their MO.
  • I feel like I'm in Mixed Reality after the Groove news!  Please tell me it's all a dream. 
  • Oh my god, please tell me you're holding that headset in your lap. I feel like puking from the shakey cam just watching it in a small window.
  • Zac, hate to say it, but I enjoy when you move the mouse around quickly to show us stuff, but your really killing this demo by moving your head all over the f-ing place. It does make me want to get one now, as I did not realize how cool this was. But I wish you would re-record a shorter vid and pay attention to your headshake.
  • With their track history whoever wants to buy have to be really cautious so you don't end up wasting time and money. This event wasn't even streamed shows how much confidence they have. First version going to be half baked, and when it slouch MS won't hesitate to shut it down.
  • So when is this canceled?
  • Is it possible to watch 3D-movies with MR? Either from virtual screen (like in movie theatre, maybe with added surroundings to make it like you are right in the middle of the scene) or direct feed (like with View-Master)...
  • There is no way Nutella will allow this to succeed.
  • (a) I <3 Zac. Always hilarious! (b) I <3 MR! I want one of these headsets ASAP. I need a virtual house. And the trip to Rome looks incredible. Can Windows Central give us a pro/con roundup before Oct 17 about the headsets available at launch so we can judge which one might suit our needs? For instance, will Steam VR compatibility be dependent on the headset, the host PC, or a little of both? Should I be looking for greater field of view, higher resolution, or both?