Microsoft has sent some confusing signals about their commitment to both their Windows Phone platform and mobile virtual reality by promoting a Russian VR hackathon using an image of a ‘Cardboard’ like mobile virtual reality viewer called the ‘Microsoft VR Kit’, before pulling it hours later.
Microsoft has been working quite hard to align itself with the virtual reality industry in recent months, without actually committing themselves to products based around the technology- the Augmented Reality exception of course being HoloLens.
Prior to and during E3 they announced partnerships with both Valve and Oculus, promoting their Windows 10 OS and its native API DirectX 12 as ‘the’ place to drive virtual reality applications from. And lets not forget the Xbox One controller shipped with every Oculus Rift and XB One streaming to virtual reality. MS is clearly savvy enough to spot a gravy train leaving the station, and VR certainly fits that description.
Now, an image has apparently surfaced promoting a Russian hackathon based around the creation of virtual reality applications. The image features a girls holding which looks to house a Nokia Lumia mobile phone, sporting the name ‘Microsoft VR Kit’ across the front. However, the hackathon page was pulled hours later and hasn’t returned.
Whether this was a bungled PR related exercise, with the hackathon returning later in another guise is unclear, but given Windows’ seeming lack of enthusiasm for its largely failed mobile platform, it does feel like a very odd move to make.