October 22, 2017

Will There Be Low Cost HoloLens?

First of all, I don’t have any internal information or anything like that. This is speculation, but not totally based on nothing.

I know most of you think that I am writing too far ahead, given HoloLens is still nothing more than a few video demos. But if you are like me who have known this thing since its beginning, you would have no doubt that this HoloLens thing will come out in a matter of, say, 5 to 8 months. If we are talking about developer devices, two month from today, probably. “Are you kidding?”, you say. No, I am not kidding. Well, I have explained my logic in another post, it’s all up to you to decide if you believe it (don’t kill me if am wrong). But still, “what are you talking about, low cost HoloLens?” I think what I have in mind may be different from what you have in mind. Lets see.

 

HoloLens - Copy

 

When you search on Bing, this is what you get:

Microsoft HoloLens

The premier device for Windows Holographic, Microsoft HoloLens is a cordless, self-contained, head-mounted Windows 10 computer that uses advanced sensors, a high-definition 3D optical head-mounted display using holographic lenses, and spatial sound to allow for augmented reality applications, with a natural user interface that the user interacts with through gaze, voice, and hand gestures. Codenamed “Project Baraboo,” HoloLens had been in development for five years before its announcement in 2015, but was conceived earlier as the original pitch made in late 2007 for what would become the Kinect technology platform.

The first line says: HoloLens is the premier device for Windows Holographic. Here is what Wikipedia says about “Windows Holographic”:

Windows Holographic is an augmented reality computing platform by Microsoft that will be introduced in the Windows 10 operating system when it is released in 2015. With Windows Holographic APIs, which are enabled in all versions of Windows 10 (including Windows 10 for phones and small tablets), augmented reality features can be readily implemented on any Windows universal app, across a wide range of Windows 10 devices. Microsoft announced Windows Holographic at its “Windows 10: The Next Chapter” press event on January 21, 2015.

Also at the beginning it says: Windows Holographic is an augmented reality computing platform. I know they are not Microsoft’s content, but you can put great faith on its accuracy.

So Windows Holographic is bigger than HoloLens, the former is a platform, the later is a device (maybe series of devices, that’s not the point.). Microsoft’s strategy has always been building a platform, lets devs, OEMs, value-added distributors build a business around it.  So, it is natural for anyone to think that a platform is the real deal. HoloLens may just be part of the big picture. There is a good imitation with the Surface Pro 3. Microsoft set the standard, OEMs will do their variations. The difference is HoloLens has to blaze the trail this time. There are two reasons.

Windows Holographic is a new era in computing. There needs to have a premier device to jump start the industry. Much like IBM PC for personal computer. This device is called HoloLens.

The technology behind HoloLens is too technically demanding for ANY company on earth other than Microsoft to put a finger on it (there might be arguments to that, but I don’t think any of them valid, I have plenty research to say that). I think Microsoft will license the whole technology in package to second party OEMs, the way they plan to do with Microsoft Band.

Will Microsoft do what I said? Time will tell, but I think it’s very logical.