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Phil Spencer: VR is isolating, isn't a priority for Project Scarlett

Phil Spencer: VR is isolating, isn't a priority for Project Scarlett

November 26, 2019 | By Chris Kerr

Microsoft has no intention of diving headfirst into the virtual reality waters with its next home console, Project Scarlett

Speaking to Stevivor at X019, Xbox chief Phil Spencer explained he has "some issues" with VR, and that Xbox customers simply aren’t clamoring for the technology.

"I have some issues with VR -- it’s isolating and I think of games as a communal, kind of together experience. We’re responding to what our customers are asking for and nobody’s asking for VR," he commented. 

"The vast majority of our customers know if they want a VR experience, there’s places to go get those. We see the volumes of those on PC and other places."

It’s interesting to see Spencer distance the Xbox brand from VR, especially when rivals like Sony and (to a very small extent) Nintendo have already entered the market with the PSVR headset and DIY Labo goggles. Xbox itself has even dabbled in VR promises in the past, at one time saying the Xbox One X would support VR only to pivot away from those plans one year later.

Of course, this doesn’t mean we won’t see Xbox hop on the bandwagon further down the line. Indeed, Spencer admits "we might get there eventually” but quite rightly points out that the technology still has some work to do to win over consumers.

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