With Microsoft's help, the Meta Quest Pro VR headset may be super productive

With Microsoft's help, the Meta Quest Pro VR headset may be super productive ...

Microsoft is bringing some of its remote work software to the metaverse. During the recent Meta Connect event in 2022, Microsoft announced that they are entering a new productivity-focused VR and AR partnership.

Microsoft wrote in a blog post about the news that, as workplace environments evolve in the aftermath of the pandemic, it''s important to adapt to the times. It''s in this context that Microsoft is expanding beyond its own HoloLens/mixed-reality efforts to help Meta establish a foothold in productivity-oriented VR and AR.

Four Microsoft employees and productivity tools (opens in a new tab) will journey through both the Quest 2 VR headset and the newly-proposed Meta Quest Pro (the official name for the long-awaited Project Cambria). These include integration with Microsoft Teams as well as support for a wide variety of work apps.

Remote work support

Microsoft Mesh (opens in a new tab) will be added to the Quest headsets. This feature will allow people to participate in Teams meetings being held in Horizon Workrooms, which are virtual boardrooms. You''ll also be able to interact with others via Meta Avatars and brainstorm ideas via virtual tools.

Quest headsets will be available on all apps from the Microsoft 365 suite. It appears that the features will support Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and SharePoint, but nothing for OneDrive or OneNote. There are also reports that the apps will not be special VR versions. Instead, the apps will be a direct port of the desktop version done by PWA technology. Windows 365 will also be available on Quest headsets, which allow users to stream customized settings.

Security is being taken into account when Microsoft Intune and Azure Active Directory will support the Quest headsets, allowing IT professionals to protect the devices with a Quest for Business subscription.

Outside of remote work integrations, both organizations discussed a desire to bring Xbox Cloud Gaming back to the Meta Quest Store. A huge screen will be projected inside the headset, giving you access to Xbox Game Pass and whatever titles you have, but it does not encompass the whole view. Think of a movie screen at a theater.

It''s unknown if Xbox Game Pass Ultimate will be offered. We reached out to Microsoft so we can learn more. This story will be updated if we hear back.

Potential end of Hololens

After seeing the video, we were left with one question: What will be done with Hololens?

Microsoft''s own take on mixed reality headsets, but it never really took off. The truth is that earlier this year, Microsoft dismissed all work on the HoloLens 3 in the middle of development. However, the company stated that those claims were exaggerated and that Hololens was being reused for the US military. In early September, the company revealed IVAS (Integrated Visual Augmented System).

When it comes to virtual reality for consumers and businesses, Microsoft looks like it''s more interested in acquiring software over hardware. Hololens may truly be gone now, outside of niche applications.