15 Apr Lighter, better, sharper – Full immersion with the HoloLens 2
It’s been three years since Microsoft introduced the HoloLens to the market. At the Mobile World Congress 2019, the company now presented the long-awaited new version of its Mixed Reality Headset, the HoloLens 2.
HoloLens 2 is primarily made for the industrial sector – the headset is no longer advertised as a consumer device. The data glasses are entitled as an industrial product and can be used for remote assistance, among other purposes. Microsoft is currently turning its attention mainly to business customers. At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, the Group offered a number of demos including the fields of industry, architecture and medicine.
But what has the HoloLens 2 ahead of its previous model and what significant changes are there?
Features of the HoloLens 2
What are the key upgrades compared to the first version of the HoloLens launched in 2016? Compared to the previous HoloLens, the new version has some improvements that simplify handling and increase the level of immersion.
Field of Vision and resolution
Compared to the previous version, the field of view of the HoloLens 2 has been doubled while maintaining the same resolution. This makes the headset much more versatile and allows better interaction with holograms.
“… The HoloLens 2 will have more than double the field of view while maintaining a resolution of 47 pixels per degree,” said Alex Kipman, Technical Fellow for AI and Mixed Reality at Microsoft, at the launch of the new data glasses. “It’s like switching from a 720p to a 2K TV”.
The pixels per degree are the decisive factor for the depth of detail and the seamless functioning of Mixed Reality Immersion – more precise and detailed holographic projections are possible the higher this value is.
Interaction and hand recognition
Immersion does not only include the placement of the holograms in the space, but also the interaction with them. The new hand control of the AR headset makes it possible to manipulate AR elements in different ways with the hands. Virtual buttons can be pressed and other complex actions can be performed that involve multiple users. For example, a model of a machine can be lifted and passed on to other users in the same simulation. This feature is not yet free of graphic errors, but the actual function is not affected and the precision of the actions is impressive.
Eyetracking and biometric recognition
Another function that is added to the new version of the data glasses HoloLens is eye tracking. Sensors, which measure eye movements, are designed to make interactions even more natural by recognizing where the user’s gaze is pointing and what is being fixed. This way HoloLens 2 can recognize the user’s intention and knows better which hologram to manipulate. Security precautions such as password entry are no longer necessary thanks to the eye-tracking sensors. An iris-based biometric identification facilitates the unlocking of the HoloLens enormously.
Fit and physical aspects
One drawback of the first version of the HoloLens was its wearing comfort. The HoloLens 2 is now more comfortable than its previous version and relatively light. The elastic strap makes it much easier to put on the glasses. A knob on the back makes it easy to adjust to different head sizes and shapes. The headset sits comfortably on the head and also causes no problems for people who wear glasses, as the display is far enough away from the eyes to provide enough space for glasses. Thanks to the padded surface, the headset sits securely on the head and doesn’t pinch – unlike the HoloLens 1, the AR glasses can be worn painlessly for several hours at a time.
Extended possibilities with new functions and features
The new functions of the HoloLens 2 further increase the possibilities of application for Augmented Reality in an industrial context. The technologies around Augmented Reality are developing rapidly and find more and more fields of application. The integration of AR has already led to significant progress in production processes and training. In these areas VISCOPIC accompanies many well-known companies into digitization.
The Munich-based startup develops solutions for AR and 3D data creation and management and works with companies such as Audi, BMW, Volkswagen and DB Netz AG. VISCOPIC is an official Microsoft Mixed Reality Partner and thus one of the pioneers in the AR industry. The Startup will be one of the first to be provided with the HoloLens 2 and thus, VISCOPIC can offer its software products optimized and extended for the new headset.
The VISCOPIC software products bring an immense advantage to the industry. The three applications Steps, Pins and Polygons change the work in different areas in times of digitalization significantly. VISCOPIC Steps can be used to create 3D content and animations manually. VISCOPIC Pins enables anyone to create Augmented Reality content without programming knowledge, which can be used on end devices such as Microsoft HoloLens or a tablet as documentation and instructions for any purpose. The VISCOPIC Polygons software enables automatic mesh reduction and real-time streaming of 3D models to the Microsoft HoloLens.
You too can implement Augmented Reality in your company using the new technology and software products from VISCOPIC and benefit from all the advantages of HoloLens 2. Submit your use case now and take part in our raffle, where you can win a free prototype, at www.viscopic.de until 17.05.2019! Further information on the products is available at www.viscopic.de or by telephone on 089/2154 6832.