With the hope of virtual reality at height, Microsoft recently introduced the new Hololens^TM. In 2013, however, my idea was challenged by the Oculus Rift. The Oculus Rift provided images cut in lenses at such an angle that our brain can process it as very similar to our naked eye’s vision. However, one of the major downfalls of it was its non-realistic and gaming-only approach. It caused the product to not be as popular as it could have been.
The new Hololens beats oculus rift and introduces itself with an everyday usable mode which allows the user to wear it as he pleases and explore the possibilities beyond just glasses. HoloLens has see-through lenses, spatial sound, motion sensors to capture information about the environment. It can process very high quality image and sound with its high-end CPU and GPU. With such specifications, projects interactive holograms with sound and movement detection.
Unlike the previous popular head wear, Google Glass, Hololens are made to provide the user an all-round real, yet processed world with holograms and touch interaction. However, Google Glass is intended to be of a different use than Hololens. Google Glasses are intended to be an undistracted reality with an interaction on the top right corner if the vision, while Hololens are intended to be an add-on to our current environment with a complete interactive shell. While many of the technical specification are yet to be released, the founder, Alex Kipman, also considered “The father of Kinect” reveals that it uses virtual heat detecting sensors similar to those of Kinect.
Currently, Hololenses come with many digital games, including Minecraft. Minecraft is shown as one of the base program to reveal what the new lenses are capable of. With extremely smooth performance and agility, the new 3-D version of the game is far beyond the imagination. However, Microsoft has not stopped there at its gaming capabilities; the new Windows 10 Gaming SDK includes the ability to program for the Hololens’ API. With it, not only developers are able to create new material, but users themselves will be able to take part in programming as well. It’s designed to be a rather simple platform where customers are welcomes to create their imagination as they please.
Stepping outside of gaming and specifications, Hololens also seem to be a new major social media platform. Its current Skype app allows the caller and the user to interact with holograms and images. The caller is able to draw holograms from their own computer directly to the user’s vision. One of the major aspects of the drawing capability is that it’s not 2-D. Therefore, it’s clearer and realistic at its person-to-person interaction. Many of the users at CNET also noted that Hololens seem to be another step in perfecting the one-on-one live interaction without actually being present.
One may be wondering at this point: “So are there any detriments to these glasses?” Well, the answer may be hidden at this point of the product. With it just being its showcase, many factors such as battery life and price is kept hidden from the consumers. As if the battery life was simply just an hour, the fear of constant being plugged into a wall would be standing. Additionally, health factor may also be a challenge depending on the equipment used in the lenses. If the equipment is similar to that of an LED, it would be extremely damaging to use over 8 hours up most. Sadly, the battery life and health issue may not be the only cause to its sale. The design itself is an all-round head band with a surprisingly thick bezel and a large surface area. If seen from normal distance, it appears as a giant pair of glasses with on-ear headphones. Many viewers are unhappy from nothing but the design as they believe it would force them to appear as robots.