Microsoft empowers new development opportunities in mixed reality, gaming and cellular PCs

The Creators Update, as well as key partnerships with Intel and Qualcomm, sets the stage for more innovative hardware and experiences for customers in 2017.

SHENZHEN, China — Dec. 8, 2016 Thursday, at the Windows Hardware Engineering Community event (WinHEC) in Shenzhen, China, Microsoft Corp. announced new opportunities for global partners to innovate with Windows 10. Terry Myerson, executive vice president, Windows and Devices Group, Microsoft, was joined on stage in Shenzhen by Navin Shenoy, senior vice president and general manager for the Client Computing Group, Intel Corporation, and Cristiano Amon, executive vice president, Qualcomm Technologies Inc., and president of Qualcomm CDMA Technologies. Together, the companies showcased new ways for partners to build modern devices that will empower the next generation of creators.

“I feel energized to be among this community of hardware engineering creators at WinHEC, who are building the next generation of modern, secure PCs that support innovative mixed-reality, gaming and mobile experiences,” Myerson said. “With the Windows 10 Creators Update and our partnerships with Qualcomm and Intel, we can build technology that serves all of us by ensuring there are devices for the creator in each of us.”

A new wave of modern PCs

Microsoft announced its latest collaboration with Intel, code-named “Project Evo.” With “Project Evo,” Microsoft and Intel will deliver all-new ways for devices to light up with the latest in advanced security, artificial intelligence and Cortana, mixed reality, and gaming. Through this collaboration, devices of the future will leverage Microsoft and Intel innovations, including the following:

  • Far-field speech communications so you can ask Cortana a question or play a song from across the room.
  • The latest security capabilities to protect devices from malware and hacking threats, advances in biometric authentication with Windows Hello, sophisticated insights from Microsoft’s Intelligent Security Graph, and additional world-class security intelligence and analytics from Intel.
  • Mixed-reality experiences for everyone through affordable PCs and head-mounted displays (HMDs) that blend the physical and virtual realities in ways no other platform can.
  • Gaming innovations like eSports, game broadcasting, and support for 4K, High Dynamic Range (HDR), Wide Color Gamut (WCG), spatial audio, and Xbox controllers with native Bluetooth.

Together, our work will extend these experiences to hundreds of millions of PC and HMD customers and raise the bar for what’s possible with Windows PCs.

Making mixed reality mainstream

  • Submitted Microsoft HoloLens for government approval in China for availability to developers and commercial customers here in the first half of 2017.
  • Shared the specifications that we co-developed with Intel for PCs that will power the first headsets capable of mixed reality. HMDs from Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP and Lenovo will be available next year.
  • Joining these partners, 3Glasses, the leading China-based hardware developer for HMDs, will bring the Windows 10 experience to its S1 device in the first half of 2017, reaching more than 5 million monthly active customers in China.
  • Customers will gain access to mixed-reality content:
    • More than 20,000 universal Windows apps in the catalog
    • 3-D objects from the web using Microsoft Edge to drag and drop into their physical world
    • Immersive WebVR content via Microsoft Edge
    • 360-degree videos available for the first time in the Microsoft Movies & TV app
  • As well, HMD developer kits will become available to developers at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

Windows with cellular connectivity

In future Windows 10 updates, Microsoft will enable connectivity that is always within reach. Customers will be able to easily buy data directly from the Windows Store and be in control of how they use Wi-Fi and cellular networks, consume data, and manage costs. Partners will be able to build always-connected devices without hindering form-factor design.  Specifically, partners can take advantage of eSIM technology to build devices without an exposed SIM slot, making it easier for people to activate a data plan right on their device.

To deliver on customers’ growing need to create on the go, Microsoft announced that Windows 10 is coming to ARM architecture through a partnership with Qualcomm. For the first time, customers will be able to experience the Windows they know with the apps, peripherals and enterprise capabilities they require, on a truly mobile, power-efficient, always-connected cellular PC.

Hardware partners will be able to build a range of new Qualcomm Snapdragon-powered Windows 10 PCs that run x86 Win32 and universal Windows apps, including Adobe Photoshop, Microsoft Office and popular Windows games.

These new devices are expected to be in market as early as next year.

Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT” @microsoft) is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. 

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