With the recent release of the HTC Vive and the upcoming Oculus Rift, there has been a shift in the gaming community. Even casual gamers want to experience the VR experience. That has led to consoles like the Xbox One and Playstation wanting to release support for their own systems or even develop their own VR headset.
The main problem is the current generation of consoles is straight up not powerful enough to run VR headsets properly. But releasing a full new generation of consoles would lead to anger in the console community, because then the current generation would only lasted 3 years.
So releasing a new console generation is not an option what do Sony and Microsoft want to do with VR and their PS4 and Xbox One?
What are Sony and Microsoft planning?
As of now there have only been some rumors.
It’s rumored that Sony will be releasing a console upgrade to their current system the Playstation 4, which would either be implemented in changing parts of the console or a secondary box that would be connected to the PS4. That would mean a new more powerful APU (Accelerated Processing Unit), which would enable the Playstation 4 to handle VR headsets with proper frame rates, detail grade and maybe even 4k resolutions .
Another Rumor concerning Sony is the release of a new upgraded console called the Playstation Neo (or Playstation 4.5). But would that be a good marketing move for Sony, as it would split the Playstation community in half. On top of that the release of a possible Playstation 5 would need to be delayed to not upset the community. So obviously Sony needs to be cautious about their decision about a new system or upgrade.
Coming to Microsoft’s side of thing there has been a rumor of releasing a Xbox Two, which would be more powerful than the current Xbox One and it would be able to proper full HD resolutions instead of the downgraded resolution that are currently being used.
In an interview Phil Spence confirmed that the Xbox One will not include Virtual Reality support for the Xbox One, as Microsoft wants to focus on Windows 10 as a dedicated VR platform.
In addition to that Microsoft will not be releasing upgrade parts for their current Xbox One system. That might be upsetting for some gamers, but Phil Spencer claimed that they rather want to focus on the smooth transition to the next console generation.
The new Kid on the Block Nintendo’s NX
Nintendo has already announced that they will be releasing a new console called the Nintendo NX. Although the NX will not even the level of power that the Playstation 4 and Xbox One offer, analysts say that it could be still likely for Nintendo to lay their focus on Virtual Reality for the NX.
Basically the system’s architecture could be optimized for VR use and Nintendo could release their own VR Headset with an own processing Unit like Samsung is doing it with the Samsung Gear VR. That would make it possible to experience VR on the technical inferior Nintendo NX.
In conclusion there is still much to be talked about concerning Virtual Reality on consoles and even the release of a new generation of consoles. The title for the best VR system could still be claimed by any company. Making right decisions fast will be the deciding factor for winning the next round of the Console Wars.
I think it’s an interesting time for all console and VR fans. I’m really excited for what is to come with the companies battling it out.
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