Microsoft has revealed that Windows 10 will bring its voice-controlled assistant Cortana to PCs, announced its own entry into the VR headset space, which is called HoloLens. And it comes with some additional features compared to its competitors.
The wearable tech’s augmented reality see-through lenses represent a major leap forward over Google Glass and other existing eyewear – assuming the machine lives up to its on-stage demo, in which computer-generated elements appeared in the world surrounding the wearer.
The HoloLens, which you can see above, has see-through holographic lenses that superimpose “holograms” onto the world that’s actually around you, combining the physical with the digital. It also touts spatial sound, so you can hear when holograms are behind you. It’s actually its own computer, not needing to be tethered to a secondary device, be that a phone or a PC. It has a high-end CPU and GPU, and even something Microsoft dubs an HPU, which stands for “holographic processing unit”.
The HoloLens system features a see-through lens, which the firm said would provide a more “personal” experience than other devices. Other demos involving the machine included the wearer:
- Playing Minecraft with the video game’s graphics appearing over living room furniture
- Seeing a Skype video appear as if it was taking place on a building wall
- Creating a model of a drone, which she saw in front of her face while shaping it by moving her hands and giving voice commands