Cast your minds back to E3 2015. Oculus has its very own press conference where it revealed the final version of the Rift and announced Touch. It was a busy event, and there was some news that inevitably slipped under the radar.
One such announcement was from Microsoft. The Windows maker took to the stage during the show to reveal that Oculus Rift and Xbox One owners could stream their console games into the headset via a Windows 10 PC. It was a quick announcement accompanied by an awkward video (Xbox boss Phil Spencer asked why everyone was laughing when he walked back on stage), and it was soon forgotten. This week, it’s popped up again.
The Xbox One Streaming app has finally launched on Oculus Home. Sadly, it won’t allow you to play Halo 5 or Gears of War 4 in full VR; the app streams games onto a virtual screen that you watch inside a number of environments. You’ll use the Xbox One gamepad, which shouldn’t be a problem seeing as one comes with every Oculus Rift sold. Think of it like the cinematic mode for PlayStation VR, just with the added middle man of PC streaming.
It doesn’t appear that the app is available for the HTC Vive, even though Microsoft stated that it was working with Valve during its own E3 conference in 2015. We’ve reached out to the company to ask if Vive support could come soon.
It will be interesting to see if this app comes to the line of Windows 10 VR headsets Microsoft is planning to release with partners next year. The company is working closely with Oculus, bringing Minecraft to both Rift and Gear VR, and Xbox controller support to the latter headset, but it also called the Rift “less immersive” than its new devices when they were revealed a few months back. At the same time, the upgraded Xbox One, Project Scorpio, is also set to support VR when it releases next year. Microsoft’s 2017 in VR should prove very interesting.