Microsoft is working on a consumer version of HoloLens

jsilva

Posts: 174   +1
Staff
Something to look forward to: Since Microsoft released the first HoloLens 5 years ago, the devices have been primarily used by businesses and the military, but plans to bring it to the consumer market are still there. That's according to Microsoft's head of Mixed Reality Alex Kipman, who shared this new expanded roadmap during an interview.

During the interview, Kipman shared his vision of what AR/MR technologies will bring in the future. Besides talking about shared experiences powered by Microsoft Mesh, a mixed reality platform designed to be compatible with numerous virtual and augmented reality headsets, Kipman also said how important it is to bring the technology to the masses.

Microsoft is planning to lead the race of AR/MR technologies, but to do it, it needs to expand the target audience of its products by selling them to the masses. Microsoft is currently selling HoloLens headsets mostly to companies in different sectors and the US military.

It's worth noting that a consumer HoloLens headset probably won't come cheap, at least at launch. The HoloLens 2, which is available for purchase at Microsoft Store, is priced at $3,500.

As per Kipman statements, a consumer HoloLens headset will need to be smaller than the HoloLens 2, coming in as a pair of "socially acceptable glasses," and offer a level of immersion that goes beyond simple notifications.

Considering that HoloLens 2 weighs over 500g and consumes 8W of power, Kipman estimates that a viable pair of AR glasses would have to weigh about 90g and use only 2W. That looks like a laborious task given the amount of hardware Microsoft have to pack inside the device.

Kipman added that Microsoft is working with Epic and Niantic to create an open mixed reality platform without any application store taxes.

Microsoft's head of Mixed Reality didn't share a release timeline for the HoloLens consumer headset but ensured that it won't release this year.

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QuantumPhysics

Posts: 5,222   +5,919
I think the sweet spot is a pair of VR goggles that have an AR mode where you can switch between the two at will.
 

Sherwoodnt

Posts: 52   +95
Based on only a brief experience with a HL, my biggest ask would be enhanced FOV before I’d consider one at any price point.
 

Hardware Geek

Posts: 380   +432
I would love an opportunity to use one and see how well they really work. I expect an interface like this will be the future of computing.
 

seeprime

Posts: 577   +703
The original Hololens presentation, made in January 2015, showed Minecraft being played in a living room. It looked great and was intended as a consumer device The problem was the filed of view was a small fraction of what Microsoft showed it as. That alone killed its sales when it finally was released. To MS's credit, they did a professional job of selling it for medical, military, and manufacturing and mantenance use. Now, generations later, they're working to get consumer attention again. This should be interesting.
 

Lounds

Posts: 896   +796
It will be too expensive. Oculus has the VR market corned. I understand why other companies want to get AR down as it's easier to get users into but I can't see it being as affordable as the Quest 2, which has been very successful and the days of saying VR is niche I think are over.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 1,723   +2,037
TechSpot Elite
Well, now I know why the tech industry wants to make self-driving cars. I can just imagine the number of bozos who would try to use these while driving and kill people.