Microsoft today announced that its latest AR headset, HoloLens 2, is finally shipping. The headset can be purchased directly for $3,500 or rented for $125 per month.
Microsoft announced HoloLens 2 back in February and has started selling the headset today. Though pricey at $3,500, HoloLens 2 is actually cheaper than its predecessor which launched at $5,000. In addition to the outright purchase price, Microsoft is also renting headset to businesses for $125 per month, and will later launch a developer edition priced at $100 per month.
Like the original, HoloLens 2 is positioned as an enterprise-focused device. Microsoft envisions companies using the headset for design, remote assistance, training, visualization, collaboration, architecture, construction, and much more.
The official specs confirm the headset’s weight at 566 grams and ‘active use’ battery life at 2–3 hours. Here’s the full spec sheet:
See-through holographic lenses (waveguides)
2k 3:2 light engines
>2.5k radiants (light points per radian)
Display optimization for 3D eye position
4 visible light cameras
2 IR cameras
1-MP time-of-flight (ToF) depth sensor
Accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer
8-MP stills, 1080p30 video
Audio and speech
Built-in spatial sound
Two-handed fully articulated model, direct manipulation
Command and control on-device; natural language with internet connectivity
Enterprise-grade security with iris recognition
World-scale positional tracking
Real-time environment mesh
Mixed Reality Capture
Mixed hologram and physical environment photos and videos
Compute and connectivity
Qualcomm Snapdragon 850 Compute Platform
Second-generation custom-built holographic processing unit
4-GB LPDDR4x system DRAM
64-GB UFS 2.1
Wi-Fi: Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac 2×2)
Fits over glasses
Aside from field of view and resolution improvements, HoloLens 2 also launches out of the gate with full hand-tracking. This is a huge improvement over the ‘air tap’ gesture that was relied upon with the original headset. With hand-tracking users will be able to more naturally and directly interact with augmented reality content.
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