HP is working on a next-generation VR headset with Microsoft and Valve that it’s calling “the new standard” in the industry. Attention is now on the headset due to the launch of Half-Life: Alyx, Valve’s first return to the franchise in 15 years.

The title currently runs on Valve and HTC’s next-gen Index headset, its last-gen HTC Vive, and offerings from competitors. HP is billing its headset as a step forward from what’s currently on the market, so it’ll be interesting to see what’s in store.

Unfortunately, we currently know little about the technical specifications of the device and the design has been only partially revealed. However, an official listing on the Steam store is enough to confirm that this is a real thing that’s happening and that there will be “no compromise”.

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The latest headset out of HP was the Reverb, which is light, comfortable, and machine washable with a resolution of 2160×2160 per eye. There doesn’t appear to be all that much to improve on from there, we’ll have to wait and see if this marks an innovation or just a spec refresh.

What exactly Microsoft is contributing to the headset is also unclear at this point. Obviously, it has its own HoloLens headset, but that focuses on Augmented Reality rather than a virtual one. The “collaboration with Valve and Microsoft” could end up being simply their help bringing it to Windows Mixed Reality and Steam. Either way, the heavy promotion of the collaboration makes it intriguing. There’s no release date just yet, though, and it’s unclear what effect coronavirus shortages will have on its production.

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