Comfort, better look, easier to use with hands. This is the snack fromMicrosoft's follow-up to the spacecraft's eyewear, announced four years ago.
The technology behind the $ 3,500 HoloLens 2 device, which Microsoft calls "mixed reality," overlays computer images with the real world. Imagine arrows that guide you down the street as you walk, or repair instructions that hover over a machine while you fix them. That's the promise of MR, says Microsoft.
(You can see live the launch event now taking place in Barcelona.)
The company was the pioneer in Augmented Reality Worlds when the tech giant debuted its first headset in 201
At prices like this, MR headsets are far more expensive than VR technology currently on the market. For example, Facebook's Oculus Rift costs $ 349, HTC Vive $ 499, and Sony's PlayStation VR $ 299. You need to buy a computer or a PlayStation 4 console to power these VR devices, but even then, their prices are at least half what Microsoft or Magic Leap charge.
This has not stopped Microsoft from developing an improved headset as part of the much busier AR universe. The company says HoloLens is still unwilling to use you and me at home. Instead, Microsoft focuses on business and the military.
Aside from this limitation, Microsoft has made some improvements to the device, which will be pre-ordered on Sunday and shipped later this year.
CNET traveled to Redmond, Washington to see the HoloLens 2 and speak with Microsoft managers and designers, including Technical Fellow Alex Kipman.
Inwe look at where HoloLens fits into the world and why some techies think that mixed reality technology improves the way we use computers.
"The goal is for these things to transform humans," said Alex Kipman, a Microsoft technical officer who oversees the HoloLens project. He describes it as a superpower for the people. "This is a concept that was in our dreams."
Inwe'll tell you what it's like to use HoloLens 2, its key features and where Microsoft continues to advance in AR … and why it's targeted at businesses, and not to the average person yet. Immerse yourself in what we experienced.
We also looked at the Microsoft lab dedicated to making products that work comfortably for 95 percent of people, regardless of their size or size. Here, Microsoft has made the HoloLens 2 more comfortable than its predecessor.
In HoloLens 2: Why is it really about the Cloud Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet explains the latest apps and services from Microsoft.
Here's what you should know about what Microsoft is announcing at the Mobile World Congress 2019 in Barcelona.
At $ 3,500, it's still not intended for everyday use.
Instead, it is mainly intended for people, eg. Industrial designers and military personnel, as well as situations where field workers may need to work freehand. However, Microsoft said its $ 3,500 headset will be ready for purchase. Someday.
It will arrive in 2019, but it is still not clear when
Microsoft has not set a definitive release date, but the HoloLens 2 can now be pre-ordered if you are interested.
James Martin / CNET
HoloLens 2 tracks your eyes
Microsoft has installed sensors near the nasal ridge of HoloLens 2, which are focused on your eyes. The technology is used to log you into save your individual settings if you share the headset with a colleague or friend.
Microsoft will also grant app developers access to eyetracking. In a demo, the company showed how a teleprompter can follow reading. There is also an integrated iris recognition that works with Windows Hello to log in to HoloLens 2.
In addition, your hands will be better tracked.
The Magic Leap One and most VR headsets have dedicated controllers. The HoloLens 2 not; It depends on manual and voice control over Cortana. The first HoloLens devices recognized basic tap-and-click gestures. However, the new headset detects 21 articulation points per hand and allows for more realistic hand movements. Technically, this is the most advanced hand tracking for any AR headset we've tried.
Doubled field of view
There's a lot to like about the changes Microsoft made with HoloLens 2, but the most dramatic improvement is the "field of view" or the number of holograms you can see at any one time.
The field of vision of the first HoloLens was about the size of a deck of cards just a few feet from your face. It was annoyingly small. The HoloLens 2 doubles this area to 52 degrees. In practical terms, it is still not as wide as most VR headsets, but better than Magic Leap One.
Unlike many AR headsets and smart glasses (including Magic Leap One), the HoloLens 2 is designed for eyewear. The new flip-up visor makes dressing even easier, and our demos worked for several team members wearing glasses.
This is an advantage over Magic Leap, which does not work with eyeglasses at all and requires a limited selection of eyeglass lenses. In 2006, the National Institutes of Health said that 14 million people in the country need some type of vision correction. Yes this is important.
New Apps from Microsoft and Partners
Microsoft also announces new HoloLens apps that most companies are likely to benefit from. One of them is called Dynamic 365 Guides, which allows companies to compile guided instructions in mixed reality. In a demo, Microsoft had a broken ATV assembled and repaired, using only the instructions of the app.
Another app called Dynamic 365 Layout creates a permanent map of the buildings in which you are located and stores them at Microsoft. For example, developers can place a hologram on a table in a room. If you leave this room and come back a day later or with another HoloLens headset, you will still find it there.
The latest headset from Microsoft works with new cloud apps, but does not have a mobile device. Instead, it connects via Wi-Fi.
Other software and business partners include Spatial, a company that develops Internet-based office video chat and collaboration software that makes you feel like the people you're connected to.
battery life? About Three Hours
Microsoft confidently states that it does not expect the entire HoloLens 2 battery to be blown out in a single session. In this case, however, the device holds according to the company about 3 hours. This is similar to Magic Leap and may be better than Facebook's Oculus Go mobile headset charging for about 2 hours.
Microsoft Returns Kinect as IoT Device
The Azure Kinect Development Kit is a small, self-contained set of cameras and microphones designed to work with a PC or directly into the cloud via Microsoft Azure , The $ 399 Dev kit can be pre-ordered on Sunday and was first announced at last year's Microsoft Build conference.
Here are the speeds and feeds.
CPU: Qualcomm Snapdragon 850 computing platform and custom second-generation Holographic Processing Unit.
DISPLAY: Equivalent to a 2K display for each eye that produces 47 pixels per degree – often referred to by Microsoft as a "retina" with a field of view of 52 degrees. (The original HoloLens had the equivalent of a 720 display for each eye in a 30 degree field of view.)
AUDIO INPUT: 5-channel microphone array.
AUDIO OUTPUT: Integrated "spatial audio".
CONNECTIVITY: USB Type C, 802.11ac 2×2, no cellular connection.
WEIGHT: 566 grams or 1.25 pounds. (The original HoloLens weighed 579 grams or 1.28 pounds.)
BATTERY LIFE: About three hours.