Good news for Windows fans as Windows Holographic will come to all Windows 10 PCs sometime in the next year. There is little doubt now that 2017 will be a thrilling year for augmented reality technology.
Microsoft had already made it clear that all machines running Windows 10 PCs would be compatible with Windows Holographic technology, but this news just confirms it even more.
Microsoft recently released its first update for Windows Holographic which added new features such as multitasking, tabs (in Microsoft’s Edge browser), and Bluetooth mouse support.
It’s safe to say now that Microsoft did take a lot of time to develop real, working, Windows 10 applications but has delivered rather well with its latest offerings for Windows and Hololens.
The Hololens, which is actually a headset with some really nifty technology, finally was made available to developers in March last year.
Microsoft also released the Windows Holographic Dev kit’s first update earlier this year. That update added features such as multitasking and the capability to rotate three-dimensional models from any angle.
The features that Microsoft introduced, for its Holographic technology, earlier this year will no doubt play a significant role in the platform’s survival. After all, the more interaction options a technology such a HoloLens provides its users, the more chances it will have to sell well when introduced in the market.
But those aren’t the only features that were added to Windows Holographic earlier this year. In January, Microsoft also added features such as three apps running simultaneously, improved ability to interact with apps, voice commands, and resizing flat app options.
These functions are pretty straightforward but nevertheless with flesh out Windows Holographic technology even more.
There were also a lot other small additions along with bug patches that made the technology much more stable than before.
Now Windows Holographic has reached a point where it can safely be called a mixed reality experience.
The technology allows you to immerse yourself in distant fantasy lands. Now, Microsoft has done us a huge favor by announcing exactly when it will be released for Windows 10 users.
Executive Vice President of Microsoft’s Windows and Devices Group, Terry Myerson, came to the stage earlier at an Intel Developer’s Forum and announced that Microsoft is currently working on a massive update for Windows 10.
That update will add the, long awaited for some, holographic shell update. The entire patch will be released as early as next year.
Terry Myerson also revealed that Intel and Microsoft are working and collaborating on mixed reality technology for PCs for some time now. He also said that the two companies have also joined hands to come up with head mounted displays or HMDs.
In the blog post, the Vice President also revealed that the common goal, of Microsoft and Intel, is to enable their hardware partners to produce a broad range of devices for the general consumer market.
Not only that, he said that the two companies also wanted to increase their dominance in the business markets as well.
Terry stated that Microsoft had partnered with numerous companies for its mixed reality technology, and the company plans to release version 1 of the spec at the Windows Hardware Engineering Community conference.
The meeting will be held in Shenzhen, sometime in December of this year.
The second part of the blog post by Terry went into more details about when the actual update will be released to the public.
Terry said that the company is working hard to release an update for Windows 10 as soon as possible in the coming year.
That update is the all important update since it will enable all mainstream PCs to run the Windows Holographic shell. Not only that, but the update will also add relevant mixed reality features along with universal Windows applications to Windows 10 PCs.
The Windows Holographic technology will enable users to blend 2D and 3D applications at the same time which will also help in activities such as multitasking.
The blog post ended with Terry thanking the readers and expressing his desire to work with all partners involved in order to create an “incredible” mixed reality experience for the end users.
Terry Myerson’s has made one thing clear; Microsoft will bring the holographic technology (also knows as mixed reality capability) to all mainstream computers (computers running Windows 10 of course) within the next year to steal the march on its competitors.
Myerson’s blog post also indicated that Windows Holographic Platform collaboration with Intel helped to speed up the process of bringing this technology to low-end machines such as Intel NUCs which has embedded Iris graphics.
All this also means that the technology will run even better on high-end PCs that offer more horsepower. Windows Holographic technology will also be optimized for Laptops, along with PCs mentioned above.
Additionally, Microsoft’s Hololens will also be compatible with Project Alloy.
Project Alloy is Intel’s latest project which is basically an all-in-one virtual reality headset. Project Alloy requires no smartphone or computer to operate.
Not much is known about Project Alloy hardware or its release price, but it is expected to be a major player in the virtual reality and augmented reality market.
Apart from Microsoft Hololens, the only other major players in the VR business, currently, are Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
Both Oculus Rift and HTC Vive require several wires in order to connect to PCs, and that has limited their appeal to consumers. With Intel providing a wireless solution in the form of Project Alloy, the likes of Oculus Rift and HTC Vive will surely feel the pressure mounting.
Microsoft Hololens has its own set of advantages such as its Windows support and ease of availability to developers.
In the past, software developers had to submit their applications for a chance to try out Hololens. But now Microsoft has relaxed its requirements so that more developers can work on its augmented reality headset.
As of now, if you’re a developer, you only need to satisfy three conditions: 1.) you must sign up for a Microsoft account, 2.) You must have a US or Canadian address and 3.) you have $3000 spare cash to actually afford the device.
And if it wasn’t clear already then there is also a limit on the number of devices you can apply for testing purposes. That number is five. You can only request up to 5 HoloLens units.
You can also buy HoloLens from Microsoft store if you meet all the requirements.
The final consumer edition is expected to cost way less so if you’re not a developer or don’t plan on developing apps for HoloLens; it is best that you stay away from HoloLens for now and wait for its price to drop when it gets an official release date.
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