A single device, a million opportunities.

Some time has passed since Microsoft has announced its new gadget HoloLens, people had the chance to go through their daily lives with all of their visionary information in mind and thus one or another might have experienced some activities or situations where a device like Microsoft’s new gadget could appear desirable.

Microsoft HoloLens - Possibilities

Only one of a million possibilities Microsoft itself has shown in a marketing video

If you did not have had your “HoloLens moment” until now, maybe the article of columnist Jurica Dujmovic for MarketWatch may be an inspiration for you. From an economic point of view he sheds light on Hololens’ possible impact on the consumer market as well as media usage and points out where “the first augmented-reality device done right” could really be an improvement:

“HoloLens will impact multiple markets, ranging from home entertainment to mobile devices; virtually everything with a screen will likely take a cue from the technology within HoloLens. Your fridge will interface with it, showing you a see-through view of groceries, along with a visual representation of the expiration dates, and the option to “check mark” individual items and add them to your shopping list. That is, without opening the fridge.”

via Microsoft’s HoloLens actually could be a game changer

But his list of opportunities and possibilities does not stop at your fridge. He talks about:

  • Changing wall colors at your home
  • Seeing fantasy scenes when looking out of your window
  • Experiencing different real world places when looking out of your window
  • Transforming your child’s bedroom into an enchanted forest instead of a traditional good night story
  • Single- or multiplayer gaming in your living room as an alternative to classical board games
  • Integration of holograms into your car and your view of the outside
  • Surgeons that use it for complex operations (if you have a special interest in medical topics we recommend the article “Drone Surgery and HoloLens: Hello 2015”  by Zev Ginzburg, UX Research Copywriter at Codal Inc.)
  • Improving the tidiness of your office working environment
  • Creating impressive art installations on almost empty walls in almost empty halls
  • Enhancing education by visual breakdown and vivid demonstration of complex subjects

Finally the authors sums it up very accurately:

“Really, HoloLens has the potential to change the way we perceive the world around us, and to truly extend and augment reality. Depending on the final product and the limits of our imagination, we may reach, or even surpass, many elements of the imaginary “Star Trek” holodeck technology.”

via Microsoft’s HoloLens actually could be a game changer

So did you find your favorite HoloLens scenario? Or do you even see more than the author? Or do you disagree and do not see any opportunities for your life in Microsoft’s new technology? We would love to hear your opinion in the comments section.

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HoloLens insider knowledge

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Ben Gilbert’s Road to Fortaleza

We were quite staggered by HoloLens after the Windows 10 live event in January 2015. But if we take a closer look at Microsoft’s corporate history, we notice that the innovation is actually not that suprising remembering several rumours and leaks in June 2012.

That time, a confidential business presentation was uploaded to Scribd. The document contains important information about various Microsoft products and their future plans. Engadget’s Ben Gilbert traced the rumour to its source and summarized his insights:

“The document is largely focused on this next console and sensor (what became the Xbox One), as well as one more big hardware announcement: HoloLens. The alternate reality headset Microsoft announced a few weeks back was originally planned for announcement in 2014, and it’s been known by a few different names (“Kinect Glasses,” “Project Fortaleza” and “Screen Zero” all show up in several places on and off the document).

I’d wager it’s had a few other names since — every time I’ve asked Microsoft reps about Fortaleza since this document first leaked in 2012, they’ve clammed up and said nothing.”

via Microsoft leaked the Xbox One, HoloLens and more way back in 2012.

Besides this, Gizmodo’s Darren Orf refers to Gilbert’s article adding that

” At first, it seemed that HoloLens was destined to be an Xbox peripheral, or at the very least gaming focused.

Although Microsoft did have a neat (in theory) concept of Minecraft using the headset, the company seems more focused on the HoloLens becoming the next evolution in computing than just an Xbox One add-on.”

via So Long: RadioShack Officially Goes Bankrupt.

If you are interested in further insights into Microsoft’s leaks, read Ben Gilbert’s article here or his original article from 2012 here.

Critics about HoloLens

cropped-hololens1.jpgStill impressed by the live presentation of HoloLens, we have to be aware of the enormous product promotion. Actually we  have already heard of a similar product previously when Microsoft presented Kinect as game changing innovation.

In short: despite of all promises nothing really happened and we are still waiting for Kinect coming to take our home entertainment to a new level. Besides this, especially Google had to make the bitter experience that people refuse to wear the AR goggles out in public – the Glass user were even declared as “Glassholes”.

Against this background we meet with skepticism as Microsoft presents another device that should transform our world  – even though with holograms.

In an article from gamesindustry, former Microsoft executive Peter Molyneux was interviewed and raised several concerns.

“It did remind me of [Kinect]. You kind of want to scream ‘don’t over promise these things.’ The thing about the concept videos is they feel so seamless and it just looks like everything’s working and actually, as we found with Kinect, it works all fine if you’ve got the perfect environment and the perfect distance away and you’re the right shape human being. But it’s very challenging if any of those things don’t come together perfectly,”

via Molyneux warns Microsoft: Don’t overpromise on HoloLens | GamesIndustry.biz.

Polygon‘s Ben Kuchera is also more cautious about HoloLens adding that

The problem is that Microsoft has only shown that hardware in a controlled environment, and we have to keep in mind the difference between these first displays of the technology and the reality of what is actually shipped.

via Skeptical of HoloLens? It’s time to rewatch how Microsoft sold us on the Kinect | Polygon.

 

To put it all in a nutshell, Microsoft is taking steps to realize their AR vision. All we can do is being patient about the further development and thinking about how HoloLens could shape our future.

As always, make sure you read the full interview with Peter Molyneux here and take a look at Polygon’s article here.

The Customer is King

customer

Hologram Customization enabled by HoloLens

Are we ready for holographic computing? Is it already time to gear up for a new powerful device called HoloLens?

This is where opinions differ. Let’s listen to what James McQuivey, principal analyst and vice president at Forrester,  says about the current hype on HoloLens.

 

In an article from Harvard Business Review, editor Scott Berinato had the chance to interview James McQuivey and got answers to some of the most viral questions concerning HoloLens.

But firstly, we will take a look at the economic perspective:

HBR: Executives don’t have a lot of time to think about things that are just hype. Is there any reason for them to pay attention to HoloLens?

“McQuivey: Yes. As an executive, you care about this because in Forrester’s Technographics survey data, there are 7.2 million adults in the US that have the ideal combination of attributes that makes them early candidates for HoloLens. They like technology, they have an Xbox, they have children, and they have an annual household income of more than $100,000. If Microsoft can persuade even half of them to jump in, that’s 3.6 million consumers, or 45% of the people who bought a Kinect at launch who will try a HoloLens by 2016.”

via What HoloLens Has That Google Glass Didn’t – HBR.

Quite impressive numbers and by the way – 2016 is not too far from reality. James McQuivey reasons his narrow time frame estimation as follows:

Why won’t it take that long?

“All the pieces are in place. Consumers are ready for new technology — Apple sold 80 million iPads in its first two years, compared to 1 million iPods in its first two years. Studying barriers to consumer adoption has been my passion since before my doctoral studies and I now find myself with very little to study given how rapidly the barriers are falling. But the technology itself is moving faster than before.”

via What HoloLens Has That Google Glass Didn’t – HBR.

Fair enough. Nevertheless it is still uncertain how HoloLens will make it through the market as it is still a prototype and not released yet.

James McQuivey argues in favor of an incremental integration into our everyday life – no big-bang-killer-app that changes our routine at once.

“Like the early web, this technology will not generate a killer app but will instead make smaller breakthroughs with existing applications throughout a wider range of industries and companies. Unlike the early web, it will not take a decade for that diffusion to occur.”

via What HoloLens Has That Google Glass Didn’t – HBR.

All we know is that HoloLens attracts a lot of attention as Microsoft seems to make science fiction become reality.

Please read the full article to get further insights into  the topic from Scott Berinato and James McQuivey here.

If you can’t get enough of James McQuivey’s bliefs, also check out his book Digital Disruption!

Bill Gates about HoloLens and the future of technology

On January 28, 2015 Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates himself gave an estimate about HoloLens during an Ask Me Anything Chat on Reddit.

bill gates

Bill Gate’s Facebook profile image

The Hololens is pretty amazing. Microsoft has put a lot into the chips and the software. It is the start of virtual reality. Making the device so you don’t get dizzy or nauseous is really hard — the speed of the alignment has to be super super fast. It will take a few years of software applications being built to realize the full promise of this.”

via Hi Reddit, I’m Bill Gates and I’m back for my third AMA. Ask me anything. : IAmA.

That comment leaves us full of hope about the development potential, but also makes clear that many challenges have to be faced before HoloLens is fully operational.

Besides this, Reddit user Future-Turtle asked Bill Gates about Microsoft and the future of technology.

“Hello Mr. Gates,

2015 will mark the 30th anniversary of Microsoft Windows. What do you think the next 30 years holds in terms of tec[h]nology? What will personal computing will look like in 2045?”

Even this question was answered by Bill Gates optimistically as he predicts that

“There will be more progress in the next 30 years than ever. Even in the next 10 problems like vision and speech understanding and translation will be very good. Mechanical robot tasks like picking fruit or moving a hospital patient will be solved. Once computers/robots get to a level of capability where seeing and moving is easy for them then they will be used very extensively.

One project I am working on with Microsoft is the Personal Agent which will remember everything and help you go back and find things and help you pick what things to pay attention to. The idea that you have to find applications and pick them and they each are trying to tell you what is new is just not the efficient model – the agent will help solve this. It will work across all your devices.”

Got interested? For further impressions about Bill Gate’s future vision read Bill Gate’s Annual Letter 2015 or visit his blog here.

Listening to expert opinions

The presentation of HoloLens caught a lot of attention. Especially the differentiation between vision, expectation and state of facts gets very difficult due to the promising product.

That’s why so-called expert opinions have to be considered and will be expressed hereafter.

 

Paul Thurrott

paul thurrott

Journalist & Blogger Paul Thurrott

After being very sceptical about HoloLens, Microsoft expert Paul Thurrott is more optimistic about Microsoft’s innovation.

“I now believe HoloLens to be an innovation far more impressive than the voice and gesture capabilities of, say, Kinect. It really is pretty incredible.”

via Hands-on with HoloLens: What the pundits are saying about HoloLens – Opinion – Trusted Reviews.

Read his full Hands-On Review: Hands-On with Microsoft HoloLens – Thurrott.com.

 

Ben Gilbert

gilbert

Senior Editor Ben Gilbert

Ben Gilbert provided a two-minded opinion.

“Ben Gilbert on Engadget provides a particularly insightful look at HoloLens, highlighting its potential but also stressing that Microsoft has a lot of development to do before it’s ready for ordinary people. His description makes it sound very unlikely that HoloLens could possibly be available this year.”

via Hands-on with HoloLens: What the pundits are saying about HoloLens – Opinion – Trusted Reviews.

Don’t forget to have a look at his full statement: I experienced ‘mixed reality’ with Microsoft’s holographic computer headset, ‘HoloLens’.

 

Peter Molyneux

molyneux

Builder Peter Molyneux

As a successful game designer, Peter Molyneux prefers the concept of HoloLens to similar VR solutions such as Oculus Rift or Project Morpheus.

In his opinion, the main challenge of HoloLens will be to define the field of application. According to gamestar.de, Molyneux already tried a previous prototype of HoloLens two years ago and bases his argumentation on this experience.

The information is taken from the following article: HoloLens – Laut Peter Molyneux »aufregender« als Virtual-Reality – News – GameStar.de  [German Article]

Excerpts from the life of Alex Kipman

Alex Kipman’s Facebook profile image

Alex Kipman – the name is on everyone’s lips. As chief inventor of HoloLens and creator of Microsoft’s Kinect motion controller, he is an outstanding personage in the Age of Technology.

Especially his work for Microsoft and the Xbox department was crowned with success – even his everyday work speaks for itself.

“Kipman’s daily routine at Microsoft is very different from your average workday. In between critiquing secret projects and attending brainstorming meetings, Kipman blocks off several hours a day for “creating,” according to Fast Company.

If you want to learn more about his career and development, follow the link below and read the full article of UK Business Insider:

Everything You Need To Know About Microsoft’s Alex Kipman – Business Insider.

Phil Spencer about HoloLens and Gaming

Arbeiter Total/leuna

Apart from Onsight and HoloStudio, the gaming industry is especially interested in Holobuilder.

The demo is based on Minecraft and allows the user to create virtual components in the physical reality.  This possibility becomes technically feasible with the new HPU processor.

Microsoft’s head of Xbox, Phil Spencer, explains the holographic processing unit:

 “The HPU gives us the ability to understand where you’re looking, to understand your gestures, to understand your voice, to spatially map your environment, to run without wires … all in real-time”

To read the full interview, click the link below:

Gaming Will Eventually Invade Microsoft’s HoloLens.