Update: For the first time in over three years, Microsoft held a press conference at Mobile World Congress. No, it’s not about a Surface Phone or a new Surface Pro. It was the stage for the unveiling of the next generation HoloLens 2 mixed reality headset. Read all about it in our first impressions article.
How to watch
Falling on the very first day of the MWC in Barcelona, you’ll be able to watch it live at 12 p. m. ET on Sunday, February 24. That’s 9 a.m. PT and 11 a.m. CT.
The event will be livestreamed and is embedded in the article for your viewing pleasure.
If you’re not able to watch it live for whatever reason, you can still keep an eye on the action and get regular updates by having some Twitter feeds open. Microsoft’s Twitter account will be a good source, and you can keep an eye on our Digital Trends account for regular updates on the announcements.
We’ll also have people on the ground at the event, and they’ll be the absolute best sources for reveal reactions and hands-on experience. In particular, make sure to follow Jeremy Kaplan as he goes hands-on with everything Microsoft announces.
What to expect
In the lead up to Mobile World Congress, Alex Kipman, the inventor of HoloLens, posted an intriguing but cryptic teaser on his Twitter account. Though the 42-second long video doesn’t go into specific details, it provided a peek at what is believed could be a new processor and carbon-fiber materials on board the new headset. Similar to the previous marketing for Microsoft’s Surface devices, it includes animations of metal ice cubes melting and small optical fibers weaving together into one larger piece. Initial media invites for the Microsoft press conference never mentioned HoloLens, but Kipman’s teaser adds some assurance that it will be discussed.
— Alex Kipman (@akipman) February 11, 2019
We also expect that the video likely is hinting to a new A.I. co-processor for machine learning which Microsoft previously confirmed would be powering the next HoloLens. In addition, based on previous rumors, it is also believed that the next generation HoloLens could be thinner, lighter, and come with a larger field of view. The next HoloLens might also be cheaper, as the current headset is priced a $3,000 and is currently only used in large companies, and even with the U.S. Navy.
Other rumors have indicated that the HoloLens 2 could come with a Qualcomm processor onboard, instead of Intel. If running on the new Snapdragon chipset, this would give the headset LTE connectivity, as well as all-day battery life. That could tie in with Windows Core OS, which is the rumored more modular version of Windows 10 which is believed could be powering the headset.
The event is confirmed to feature Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, HoloLens inventor Alex Kipman, and Corporate Vice President Julia White. You can expect for these high-level Microsoft executives to shed more light on the next version of HoloLens, and perhaps even a bit more.
We’ll be there covering the event, along with all the rest of our MWC coverage through the week.
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