Microsoft’s HoloLens headset drops digital creations into real life

Yes, headsets like the Oculus Rift and Gear VR have their own takes on augmented reality, but Microsoft is going beyond virtual worlds with the announcement of Windows Holographic and Windows HoloLens.

It’s a holographic world, after all

Windows Holographic is, at its core, Microsoft’s take on augmented reality, but it utilizes holograms. Powering it all is Microsoft HoloLens, a headset that the company describes as “the most advanced holographic computer the world has ever seen.” The HoloLens headset is equipped with see-through, holographic lenses. It projects holograms that are powered by an unspecified CPU and GPU, alongside a dedicated holographic processor. The HoloLens headset incorporates spatial sound, which allows you to “hear” holograms around you, as well as a wide array of sensors.

Best of all, the headset works independent of other devices, so there’s no need to tether it to a phone or PC.

The video presentation for the HoloLens headset showed some ambitious visions of the future. It gave us an idea of what it would be like to play Minecraft in your living room, Skype and watch live TV from any surface, or walk alongside the Mars Curiosity Rover during a tour of the Martian surface. The HoloLens even shared a glimpse of new ways to show off the latest 3D design of your company’s product with a fellow employee.

Build holograms with Holo Studio

While Microsoft certainly invites developers to try their hands at developing applications for the HoloLens headset, it decided to write an app of its own. Called Holo Studio, the app lets you create a hologram by utilizing a Windows 10-like user interface. You can pinch to zoom and reach out to touch elements of the UI, such as the tools to change color.

Additionally, there are voice controls to do things like copy content and enable rotation. When you’re done with your masterpiece, you can have it 3D printed, seeing as Holo Studio is the equivalent of a holographic preview.

It’s still early in development

With all things considered, the HoloLens headset is still early in development. Even so, Microsoft announced it will be made available “in the Windows 10 timeframe.” More information on the HoloLens will be revealed during Build, Microsoft’s annual developer conference.

In the meantime, Microsoft promised everyone in attendance would be able to try Holographic and HoloLens, so stay tuned for our hands-on coverage. The announcement video is below for your viewing pleasure.

Product Review

Apple's best product isn't the iPhone, it's the Apple Watch

Apple already ruled the smartwatch market with the Apple Watch Series 3, but the Series 4 elevates it to new levels with more screen, a sleeker design, and even an world-first electrocardiogram app that lets you keep tabs on your ticker.
Computing

Is the new Surface Pro 6 worth the extra money or is the Surface Go good enough?

Each of Microsoft’s Surface devices are great, but with the recent addition of the Surface Pro 6, you might be wondering how it stacks up against the Surface Go. In this comparison piece, we’ve put the two devices up against each other…
Emerging Tech

Here’s how Microsoft’s Hololens is helping NASA build the new Orion spacecraft

Lockheed Martin is turning to Microsoft’s mixed reality Hololens smartglasses to help build NASA's Orion spacecraft, which could one day help rocket astronauts as far afield as Mars.
Computing

Patent filing shows Microsoft’s evolving efforts on foldable Andromeda device

Project Andromeda may be a taking a design twist, and it's not all bad news. Rather than the planned design with two distinct displays that could fold on a central hinge, Microsoft's latest patent reveal a single flexible display.
Computing

Windows Insiders get fix for October 2018 Update’s data delete bug

Microsoft has patched its October 2018 Update for Windows 10 to include a fix for the data deletion bug that hit a few users upon the initial rollout. Insiders will test it first before it's sent to the full Windows user base.
Product Review

Fossil's Q Venture HR packs quality fitness features into stunning, everyday watch

Starting at $255, the Fossil Q Venture HR brings along top-notch health and fitness features without having to sacrifice style for everyday wear. It also includes Google's new Wear OS. Is it the upgrade from Fossil we've been waiting for?
Product Review

Garmin's Fenix 5X Plus is built for fitness freaks who fawn over every feature

With onboard music, full-color topographic maps, and new sport metrics, the Garmin Fenix 5X Plus sets a high bar for GPS smartwatches. Find out how it can help boost your performance in our Fenix 5X Plus review.
Wearables

The Fitbit Charge 3 is now available for purchase worldwide

Back in August, Fitbit confirmed its new wearable -- the Fitbit Charge 3. The new fitness tracker features a touchscreen OLED display, smartwatch capabilities, enhanced fitness features and more. Here's everything you need to know about it.
Product Review

Withings Steel HR Sport is a fitness tracker you’ll love wearing

Withings jumps back in the wearables game with the new Steel HR Sport, a hybrid smartwatch that is as much a fitness tracker as it is a timepiece. It's so good that it hasn't left our wrist since we pulled it out of the package.
Deals

The best Apple Watch deals for October 2018

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years. If you're in the market for an iOS wearable, we've sniffed out the best Apple Watch deals available right now for all three models of this great smartwatch.
Outdoors

Garmin’s new Instinct GPS watch is built for the sportsman in all of us

The new Garmin Instinct is a GPS multisport watch for people who love to be outdoors. The $300 Instinct takes the best features of the company's popular Fenix watches and packages them into rugged, military-grade package.
Wearables

These are the best smartwatches for everything from fashion to fitness

Tempted to buy a smartwatch? If so, then the growing number of great models available means you've got plenty to choose from. But which one should you pick? Here is our list of the best smartwatches.
Wearables

Our favorite fitness trackers make it fun to keep moving

Looking for your first fitness tracker, or an upgrade to the one you're already wearing? There are plenty of the wrist-worn gadgets available. Here are our picks for the best fitness trackers available right now.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: DIY smartphones and zip-on bike tires

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!