Xbox One boss says virtual reality is "really interesting" for games

Head of Xbox Phil Spencer says virtual reality is "clearly an area people are excited about."

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Microsoft's rumored AR/VR system
Microsoft's rumored AR/VR system "Fortazela"

In a new interview, Head of Xbox boss Phil Spencer makes it clear that he's excited about the future for virtual reality technology for gaming, but stopped short of confirming any Microsoft-produced headsets or other wearable devices.

"Virtual reality is a really interesting area, especially for games, and while it seems like it's been 'just over the horizon' for the last 20 years or so, I think we could finally start seeing it prove out soon for both gamers and developers," Spencer told Fortune.

Virtual reality is indeed gathering mainstream appeal. Last month, social networking giant Facebook bought Oculus VR--maker of the Oculus Rift headset--in a deal worth an estimated $2 billion. PlayStation maker Sony also recently announced its own virtual reality headset, Project Morpheus.

During the Game Developers Conference in March, Spencer revealed that Microsoft has been experimenting with virtual reality for some time now. He reiterated that point in the new interview, saying that Microsoft's research team "has been playing with virtual reality for quite a while."

"While we don't have anything to officially announce, it's clearly an area people are excited about. The potential is definitely there," Spencer said.

Earlier this year, it was discovered that Microsoft paid as much as $150 million for assets related to wearable technology. In addition, a leaked document from 2012 showed that Microsoft is planning to introduce a VR/AR system called "Fortazela" for the Xbox One sometime in the future.

Also in the interview with Fortune, Spencer says console exclusives are as important as ever for Microsoft and the Xbox brand going forward.

"Exclusive games will continue to play a major role for Xbox in the new console generation, just as they have in previous generations," Spencer said. "I'm a true believer in our exclusive platform features like Kinect, SmartGlass, and the cloud, but games have always been the bedrock of our consoles at Xbox."

Some of the big Xbox One exclusive games announced so far include Sunset Overdrive, Project Spark, Quantum Break, and the new Halo game. Spencer teased that even more system exclusives could be announced at E3 in June.

"It's going to be great at E3 to be able to share the games coming exclusively to Xbox One, and it's only going to get better," he said.

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