Could the next Microsoft HoloLens be announced at MWC 2019?

Microsoft’s next-generation HoloLens could be coming soon. After not having a presence at Mobile World Congress (WMC) for three years, Microsoft is now sending out media invites for a press conference at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday, February 24, during the annual event in Barcelona, noting it will be hosted by CEO Satya Nadella and HoloLens inventor Alex Kipman.

Since it is longer selling phones, Microsoft’s presence at Mobile World Congress further hints that the press conference could be centered on HoloLens version 2.0. Alex Kipman has also been closely involved with the development of HoloLens and a Microsoft webpage dedicated to MWC makes references to “transforming spatial understanding through advanced sensors and AI at the edge to make technology more personal and natural.” It was previously confirmed by Microsoft that the next HoloLens would feature an A.I. processor for machine learning, so this supports a possible indication of a HoloLens version 2.0 unveiling.

Asides from the A.I. processor, rumors have indicated that Microsoft’s next HoloLens could come with an ARM Processor on board, instead of Intel. With the release of both the Surface Pro Advanced LTE and Surface Go with LTE, Microsoft has also been pushing for a “new culture of work.” A HoloLens 2.o with an ARM processor capable of LTE connectivity would support the initiative and the enterprise audience which Microsoft is currently targeting.

Code-named “Sydney,” it also has been rumored that the new HoloLens headset could be cheaper, lighter, and have a larger field of view. That is just gossip, however, as HoloLens has always been marketed towards businesses, complete with a suite of applications for remote assistance, and making designs in custom 3D spaces. Timing also seems appropriate since the new HoloLens headset could run on Windows Core OS, for which an internal Windows build for recently surfaced online.

A HoloLens 2.0 would come over four years after the launch of the first HoloLens and it could just be the start of Microsoft’s 2019 devices lineup. According to rumors, the company is working on several new devices, including a folding Surface Centarus as well as a modular Surface Studio. Don’t expect these at MWC 2019, though, as Microsoft’s Surface chief Panos Panay won’t be speaking at the event.

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