Microsoft is now taking pre-orders for its HoloLens Development Edition device and plans to ship the kit to developers starting March 30th.
There are a few barriers to entry though. First, you need to be willing to spend $3,000. Second, you need to apply for a development kit before you’re even allowed to spend money on one. Microsoft is targeting software developers with this version of its wearable computer, not the general public.
HoloLens is a wearable computer that’s designed to mix virtual reality and real… reality.
You wear it on your head like a VR headset or Google Glass device, but HoloLens puts a semi-transparent screen in front of your face so that you can see virtual experiences overlaid on real-world environments. And unlike many existing wearables, HoloLens doesn’t require a connection to a phone or PC… it is a PC.
In fact, Microsoft calls it an “untethered holographic computer.”
HoloLens runs Windows 10 software and taps into existing APIs for the platform, allowing you to run normal Windows apps so that you can watch movies, listen to music, or even interact with Office software on a screen that floats before your eyes. But what really makes HoloLens special is the hardware that enables support for mixed-reality experiences in games, design software, or other applications.
In addition to a head-up display, HoloLens has built-in cameras and sensors for mixing virtual experiences with your real-world environment. There’s also support for spatial audio, gaze and gesture tracking, and voice recognition.
Microsoft has also released a set of HoloLens documentation and tutorial videos for developers to help them create “holographic apps” as well as a few of the first apps, including a new version of Skype that supports hologram communication and a 3D design app called HoloStudio.