I recently complained that the lack of camera passthrough on Windows Mixed Reality headsets was its biggest mistake, as it removed any differentiating features between the headsets and other VR devices, and kind of made a joke of the Windows Mixed Reality name.
It turns out however that it is possible to capture video data from the two cameras built into each Windows Mixed Reality headset, which is currently being used to generate positional data and track the motion controllers via the prominent LEDs on their surface.
The feat was achieved by developer Nakamura and can be seen demonstrated in the short video below.
The bad news, and as the headline suggests there is one, is that the cameras are infra-red cameras, which offer excellent detection of the LEDs on the motion controllers, but appear to do little to create a friendly version of the real world, unless you are happy with a hellish version of the Terminator’s heads-up display.
So, unfortunately, a missed opportunity, but I am sure some clever developers will be able to do something interesting with the data and access.
Microsoft launched their Windows Mixed Reality ecosystem last week, and the devices are on sale now.