Just three years ago, Microsoft revealed the Hololens to the world, opening the doors for a holographic headset world. A number of augmented reality applications were available including: viewing 3D holograms, 3D modeling, virtual Skype, and virtual tours. Despite its capabilities, however, people criticized that the hardware was simply too heavy and not immersive enough. $3000 just wasn’t an amount any normal consumer could throw away for an impressive looking tech. And now in February 2019, Microsoft announced the new Hololens 2, a more “comfortable, immersive, and out of the box value” of the previous Hololens, as described by Microsoft’s technical fellow, Alex Kipman.
One of the first note-able changes for people who were able to test the new Hololens was it was considerably lighter. Microsoft designed better ergonomics for the device based on previous feedback. In the device’s new architecture, some of the computing power was relocated from the front to the back of the headset to relieve pressure on the front of the head to help extended periods of use. In addition to its comfort, the headset is able to conform to almost any head type or shape. And if the user ever wants to get out of mixed reality, they don’t need to take the whole headset off, they can simply flip up the visor.
The second Hololens’ target audience is still towards those in the working field that don’t sit behind a desk all day. Thus they deal with a lot of hands-on work. The new version adds on a couple more hand gesture controls so that users can freely manipulate 3D models in the air by resizing it, twirling it, or punch it. All these add-ons help better immersive the user into mixed reality.
The Hololens 2 can be preordered for $3500 and will be fully released soon in the coming months.